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Harold D. 



Dry Laws 



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33 Newbury St VcerrtJ/ Boston. Mass. 

HAROLD DAVID WILSON was born in Cawk^r 
City, Kansas, in 1884, spent his ea-rly youth in Shel- 
burne Falls, Massachus,etts, lost his mother at the 
age of twelve, at fourteen was earning his own way 
through High School and later through Tufts Col- 
lege, has had some years experience a^s a reporter, 
editor and publisher, is a Veteran of the World War 
(Aviation Corps), after his honorable discharge as 
a First Lieutenant A. S. A. (Air Service Aeronatics) 
was prominently identified with the Soldiers' and 
Sailors' Employment Bureau, Boston Common, was 
head of the Victory Liberty Loan Military Speak- 
ers for New England, Chairman of the American 
Legion (Massachusetts) Speakers' Bureau in 1919, 
and State Reg-istrar^qf Vital Statistics for two 5' 
prior to appointment to . Massachusetts Prohibition 
Department, acceptance of-latter position can hardly 
be construed as a promotion, but rather as a sacri- 
fice in behalf of the Cause. 

Dry Laws and Wet Politicians 


Harold D. Wilson 

Copyright 1922 by 


Somerv-ille, Mass. 







to my wife, Mary Burroughs Wilson and our two sons 
David Burroughs and Weston Perry Wilson 

Fathers and mothers ! The fight is on ! You can- 
not be slackers when the heahh and future happiness 
of your children is at stake. 

If we stand steadfast on Prohibition Law Enforce- 
ment, the youth of this generation will never know 
the many temptations and pitfalls of the liquor 

S', Ov^ 

MAR 1 3 1922 


Mrs. Harold D. Wilson, and two sons 
David and Weston 

Photos by J. R Pardy & Co., Boston 


Table of Contents 

Mrs. Harold D. Wilson and sons 
Harold D. Wilson, the author 
A Typical Still 
Cartoon Pages 




6, 7, 165 and 167 


I Removed for Over-Zealousness 

II The Quincy House Raid 

III Ignorance Sublime 

IV Have Our Courts Broken Down? 

V Facts on Prohibition 

VI Publicity— It Made and It Unmade 

VII Over the Top 

VIII How to Enforce Dry Laws 

IX Wet Politicians' Wet Records 

X Outwitting the Bootlegger 

XI Hypocrisy of Wet Politicians 

XII Dry Agents 

XIII Carrie-Nationing Stills 

XIV Pretext for My Removal 
XV My Alleged Insubordination 

XVI Gunning for the Big Fellows 

XVII Snappy Editorials 





















Chapter I. 

By whom and for what purpose? 

These questions have been asked on every hand 
since my removal as Chief Prohibition Enforcement 
Officer in Massachusetts. Commissioner of Internal 
Revenue, David H. Blair, of Washington accused me 
of being indiscreet and temperamentally unfit. Al- 
though a few short days prior to my discharge, he 
not only offered but urged me to accept a better 
position in the Prohibition Unit with the proviso 
that I must work elsewhere than in Massachusetts. 

Federal Prohibition Commissioner, Roy A. Haynes, 
in his statement conceded I was one of the best en- 
forcement officials in the country, but added that I 
was sometimes unduly energetic, and too indiscreet. 
He was also, very anxious to keep me in the service, 
provided I would work outside of Massachusetts. 

The logical inference is that I was too energetic 
and too indiscreet for the Old Bay State, but just the 
type of enforcement official for any other State in 
the U. S. A. In other words, satisfactory to the de- 
partment heads in Washington, but not satisfactory 
to certain powerful interests in Massachusetts. 

The following editorial published in the Boston 
Traveler, on January 23, 1922, is worth reading in 
connection with my alleged over zealousness: 


It is very evident that Harold D. Wilson has been too 
zealous in the enforcement of prohibition. He has 
made his superior officer in the district uncomfortable. 
He has made certain citizens uncomfortable. He has 
made Senator Lodge and certain representatives un- 
comfortable, directly or indirectly. So he was called on 


the carpet and told he might choose between retiring 
from the job or retiring from the Boston district. 

What are the charges against this young man specifi- 
cally? Not that he has neglected to do his duty, but 
that he has done it too thoroughly. He is said to lack 
tact, discretion, the ability to get along with his fellow 
officers. Doubtless this is true. Still the question 
arises , "What is a prohibition enforcement officer hired 
for?" Must he be a model of affability, a good mixer, a 
person half-hearted in the performance of duty? Or 
is it just possible that the so-called failure of prohibi- 
tion to prohibit, is due to the employment of agents 
better adapted by nature to making friends than to 
making enemies? 

Wilson is able to make enemies. He is willing to 
make enemies. He has made enemies. IThe point which 
the Congressmen may have overlooked is that the public 
servant who is not afraid to make enemies also makes 
friends, immense numbers of them. 

"Removed for over zealousness in the performance of 
duty" is a sign that can scarcely be written over any 
man's head without forcing the query, "By whom, — and 
by what right?" 

The Senior Senator, Hon. Henry Cabot Lodge, is 

quoted as saying he was not interested, and he would 
wash his hands of the whole affair. History has in- 
cluded many hand washers, including Pontius Pilate, 
none of whom have proven particularly successful. 
Such trivial matters as law enforcement in the Old 
Bay State are of no consequence to the Senior Sen- 
ator. Why should he worry about prohibition law 
enforcement while such well known wet leaders as 
Charley Innes, Samuel Winslow, et al, are happy and 

The purport of Congressman Samuel E. Winslow's 
statement was that he did not know Mr. Wilson, 
which was probably the truth in as much as Mr. 
Wilson, never attended any wet banquets except in 
the capacity of a raider. 

No statement has been obtained from Mr. Charles 
H. Innes, famous G. O. P. boss, custodian of liquors 
at governors' banquets, etc., although it is reported 
on the very best of authority that during the recent 



Potter-Wilson controversy in Washington, Mr. Innes 
was registered in a Washington hotel, not far from 
Prohibition Headquarters. Undoubtedly Mr. Innes 
approves of my dismissal or such action never would 
have been sanctioned. 

It is also safe to assume that the Governor, 
Channing H. Cox, is pleased at my summary dis- 
charge, otherwise he might have interested himself 
in my retention. The slightest activity on his part 
backed up by the thousands of other endorsements 
I received, would have undoubtedly saved the day. 
But why should he worry, as long as his ardent sup- 
porter of many years, Charley Innes, is happy? 
Certainly future G. O. P. love feasts will be safer, if 
not drier. 

Lieut. Gov. Alvan T. Fuller has been quoted as 
attributing my discharge to the raiding of the Gov- 
ernors' banquet at the Quincy House. The Lieuten- 
ant Governor is a prohibitionist by conviction and 
not by policy. He has an excellent reputation for 
veracity, but a mighty poor record for covering up 
political rot. In other words, Hon. Alvan T. Fuller 
has long been a thorn in the flesh of Senator Lodge, 
and other G. O. P. leaders, because he has been 
prone to tell the truth, and nothing but the truth, on 
any and all occasions. 

Cozy politics require cozy tactics. No man in the 
Charles Innes-Senator Lodge school is supposed to 
speak until he receives instructions. The Lieutenant 
Governor is a successful business man, in fact he has 
proven very able and far seeing in the business 
world, but in politics, he is too indiscreet, too out 
spoken and too independent. He will never do as a 
politican, although many think he possesses the 
necessary requisites for a statesman. 

Hon. Robert M. Washburn, than whom there is 
none more sarcastic in the whole wide world, has 
been reported as disapproving of my dismissal. 
Bob, however, is reported to be very unruly. He has 



had the nerve to enter politics and still persist in do- 
ing his own thinking, a most unusual breach of 
discipline, and something that will undoubtedly pre- 
vent his further elevation in the political world. 

I might go on and name a multitude of politicians, 
near politicians, dry leaders and others who have 
been quoted on one side of the fence or the other. 
But why persist in this line, especially since I am 
getting somewhat off my subject of "fired, by whom, 
and for what purpose." 

The following letter is an exact copy of my dis- 
charge received from the Commissioner of Internal 
Revenue, David H. Blair. This letter was preceded 
by a telegram to the same effect, received late Friday 
evening, January 27th. 


Washington, Jan. 27, 1922. 
Mr. Harold D. Wilson, 

c|o Federal Prohibition Director, 
Boston, Mass. 

You are hereby removed from the position of 
Head, Field Force for the State of Massachusetts for 
the Good of the Service, effective at the close of 
business January 27th, 1922. 

DAVID H. BLAIR, Commissioner. 

My discharge was dated January 27th, approved 
on the 30th, and received by me on February first. 
My pay, however, stopped on the 27th, and I had to 
complete whatever official business was absolutely 
necessary on Saturday, the 28th, and Monday the 
30th at my own expense. 

In addition to the telegram and letter already men- 
tioned, Commissioner Blair, kindly informed the 
Washington Newspaper Correspondents that he had 
decided after reading a number of news dispatches, 
that I was too indiscreet, too insubordinate, and too 
temperamental for retention in the service. He was 



even so heartless as to withdraw his offer to give me 
a better position outside of Massachusetts, which I 
had positively refused to accept. 

If a man is indiscreet who not only insists but 
persists, in the face of opposition, in enforcing the 
law he is sworn to uphold, than I am quite willing 
to be listed as indiscreet. 

If a man is insubordinate who persists in doing the 
work he is paid to do (an unpardonable si.i in a 
federal office holder) whether his superiors want 
action or not, then I suppose I was insubordinate. 
No one has attempted to gainsay, however, that I 
was energetic and industrious and no one has indi- 
cated the slightest suspicion that the men who dic- 
tated the policy of my superior wanted action or 
suspected my superior of undue activity. 

If a man is temperamentally unfit who knows only 
one law which is alike for all men — who can see no 
difference between the rich and the poor man, a 
governor and a Polack in the matter of liability for 
violating k constitutional law — who is such an un- 
sophisticated ignoramus that he believes the laws 
should be enforced from the Top Down rather than 
from the Bottom Part Way Up, then I am as tem- 
peramental as a prima donna, and am proud of it. 

The following extract from an editorial in the 
Springfield Republican, January 22, 1922, is pertin- 
ent relative to my indiscretions: 


A first class prohibition enforcement officer this Mr. 
Harper from Washington may be, who has been ordered 
into Massachusetts to do "field work". But what is to 
happen to Mr. Wilson the man on the job. Wilson is 
the issue, so events have decreed. Why is it necessary 
to remove him, or to transfer him in view of the fact 
that he is now reputed to be the most aggressive and 
efficient prohibition enforcement officer in the state? 

"Dry" Wilson^s friends will not be denied a satisfac- 
tory explanation. He may have been indiscreet in some 
Df his utterances; perhaps he has not shown deference 
enough to his superiors in office. He may be hard to 



g«t on with. But the stubborn fact remains that he put 
teeth into the law and made it bite. Isn't that the kind 
of enforcement officer the law needs? 

Before the end of the chapter, which has not been 
reached quite yet, the Washington authorities must justi- 
fy their course in separating from his job a man who 
had put the job on the map in a way to make a lot of 
Massachusetts* politicians wriggle like worms on a hot 

There is not the slightest doubt in my mind, or in 
the mind of Mr. Average Man, who was responsible 
for my discharge. 

The Washington department heads cannot be held 
accountable. Federal Commissioner Haynes has ad- 
mitted to me and to some of the newspapers in 
Washington that the matter of my retention in the 
service was beyond his control. He referred inter- 
viewers to Senator Lodge, and Commissioner Blair. 
Reference to some of the newspapers of January 20 
and 21st will bear me out in this statement. 

Commissioner Blair may be a fine fellow, but he 
has made little impression in Washington or in the 
country at large relative to his independence. He is 
a typical federal office holder. He is neither too 
aggressive, nor too eager for unusual accomplish- 
ment. He does as he is told with alacrity and dis- 
patch, without the undue exercise of gray matter. 

In the Massachusetts situation he was told quite 
forcibly by someone, and that someone was certainly 
a Massachusetts man, and not an individual hailing 
from the State of Oregon or some other remote part 
of the U. S. A. what to do — how to do it, and when 
to do it. It makes no difference whether Senator 
Lodge sent directly to Commissioner Blair or wheth- 
er he acted through some of his lieutenants, such as 
Congressman Winslow or Charley Innes. The re- 
sponsibility is his. He was in somewhat the same 
position as the old Roman Emperors who sealed the 
fate of the Gladiators with thumbs down or thumbs 

The Senator chose thumbs down and in so doing 



he ran true to form in his opposition to prohibition. 
I shall deal with his consistently wet record in a 
later chapter, but simply wish to make it clear at 
this point that he was the one man in Washington 
with the power to either wash his hands while I was 
railroaded or give the slightest sign of approval and 
keep me in the service. 

In justice to the Senator, it may be said that he 
was illy advised by Charley Innes, Congressmen 
Winslow and Tinkham, and others closest to him, 
but it is barely possible that it might be better for 
prohibition law enforcement in Massachusetts if the 
Senior Senator was more attentive to the suggestions 
of such dry Congressmen as Dallinger, Underbill and 
Rogers and less receptive to the suggestions of tho3C 
who are recognized as wets. 

The real key to the situation is summed up in the 
following brief statement which sets forth the exact 
information I received at the Washington Railroad 
Station, on my last pilgrimage to Washington. My 
inf ormatif>n, breifly, was as follows, and was received 
from two gentlemen in whom I have explicit confidence 

"Your goose is cooked., You may accept a transfer 
to another state or get out of the service. You are rid- 
ing certain interests so persistently and so unrelentingly 
that you must be removed from the Massachusetts 
Field. Your activities are creating opposition that will 
prove accumulative and consequently prove dangerous 
in the Fall. If you are forcibly removed, there will be 
a spasm of protest, back home and then all will be for- 
gotten long before the fall election." 

My theory and the theory of many other prohibi- 
tionists in this state is that Senator Lodge, Gov. 
Cox and others who apparently deem the wet vote 
essential to their success are entitled to all of these 
votes, but that they are deserving and will get mighty 
few of the church or dry vote. 


Chapter 11. 

On Tuesday, December 20, 1921, I returned to my 
office in the Old South Building, at 7:30 in the eve- 
ning, after leading a successful raid on the Rossmore 
Hotel, Boston, Mass. I found one of my agents and 
a private citizen, whom I had known in a friendly way 
as one interested in prohibition enforcement, await- 
ing my return. 

The citizen said to me : "Wilson, do you know what 
is going on in the Quincy House tonight?" 

He had an air of suppressed excitement. 

I immediately smelled the smoke of battle and 
asked him to tell his story. 

"Well," said he," about all the Republican leaders 
of Massachusetts are down there at a dinner to Gov- 
ernor Cox, lapping up booze like a bunch of ward 
healers at an old time *night before\ They are all 
decked out with red tags and nearly every one sport- 
ing a tag has about four drinks under his belt. They 
are so drunk that if you tie a red necktie in your but- 
tonhole, you will easily get by the doorkeeper." 

I reached for the telephone, then paused: "Do you 
really mean it", I asked. "Are all the big G. O. P. 
guns present ?" 

"True as I stand here", said the man. "Ask your 
own agent when he returns. He is down to the 
Quincy House investigating." 

I then learned that my informant had brought the 
information to the office sometime before and that one 
of my agents was personally investigating his as- 
sertions. Agent William H. McCray rushed into the 
room at this point in breathless excitement and cried : 
"Chief the lid's off in the Quincy House. All the 
Republican politicians in the State are crammed in- 
to a swell young barroom trying to see who can last 
the longest. It is a regular old time drinking ca- 



"Did anyone see you down theref", I inquired, fear- 
ful lest he had given away the tip. 

"Not a soul, so far as I know", he replied. 

"All right", said I, "how many agents do we 

"All we can scare up. It is the gayest bunch of 
booze fighters I ever saw in my life. We will surely 
get into trouble if we hit that place tonight." 

"Never mind the trouble", I said, "the politicians 
have no more right in this matter than anyone else." 

I did some deep thinking for a few minutes. In 
a flash I foresaw all the sickening and farcical court 
proceedings which were later to be paraded before 
the public eye. For a moment, it seemed to me a 
poignant tragedy that practically all the political 
leaders of the Republican party, my own party, 
should be gathered together in a public place openly 
flouting the Constitution of the United States. 

I was so disgusted at this monumental hypocrisy 
that nothing could have stood in the way of my raid- 
ing that banquet. I could see clearly, however, that 
such a raid meant the beginning of the end for me 
as Prohibition Chief. 

*'Boys," I said, turning to my two agents, "it 
probably means your jobs. Are you with me?*' 

"You bet," they cried enthusiastically, "let's go." 

I knew that every conceivable technicality would 
be resorted to by the parties involved to get the case 
thrown out of court, so I resolved to get a search 
warrant at any cost, if there was any conceivable 
way in which to do so. For a moment, I was wor- 
ried, for I realized that the United States Commis- 
sioner, William A. Hayes, the Mr. Pickwick of the 
Federal Building, would never issue a search war- 
rant for a raid on a Republican party. Then it oc- 
curred to me that Commissioner Hayes was not 
sitting at that time and that I might apply to Comr 
missioner William S. Nelson, whom I knew as a fair 
and always impartial watch-dog of the law. 



I grabbed the telephone and called Commissioner 
Nelson's home. He was not there. His family could 
not tell me where he was. I told them that it was 
a matter of life and death and that I must locate 
him. They replied that the Commissioner was quite 
fond of bowling-, and that he might possibly be found 
at the City Club. 

The next two hours were the most hectic of my 
seven months' administration as enforcement agent. 

I seized my hat and coat and hurried to the City 
Club. Luck seemed to be against me. The Commis- 
sioner had been bowling but had left the Club less 
than ten minutes before my arrival. I drove to his 
office on State street. There was a man present in 
the office but he did not know where the Commis- 
sioner had gone. I returned to my own office and 
began jingling the telephone again. I called his 
home, the City Club, and his office in rotation, but 
without results. I left word for him to call me if 
he should return to any of these places. I also tried 
to locate one of the Assistant United States Attor- 
neys, but without success. 

By 9:30 I became so disgusted and discouraged 
with the prospects of obtaining a Federal warrant 
that I went to the Police Headquarters at Pember- 
ton Square to see Captain Reardon, whom I had 
found to be a mighty accommodating friend. I 
told the Captain that I was very anxious to secure 
a State warrant in order to raid a big political party. 
He told me that I was "out of luck", as there was no 
way of obtaining an emergency warrant at that time 
of the night. 

I then told the Captain that I was going through 
with the raid any way, warrant or no warrant. 
While my unfailing policy had always been to re- 
spect the Constitutional guarantee against undue 
search and seizure, in this case it seemed to me that 
public officials in whom the great people of Massa- 
chusetts had placed their most sacred trust, and who 



in return were openly breaking tne Constitution, de- 
served no protection from the Constitution. I de- 
cided that I would be an opportunist in this case, 
go to the Quincy House, look around for myself 
and see if there was not some legal way in which to 
interrupt this Bacchanalian outlawry. 

I was just about to leave when Captain Reardon's 
telephone rang. The Captain turned the call over to 
me, and the excited voice of my agent, Peter Sul- 
livan, greeted me. 

* 'Commissioner Nelson has arrived home and will 
see you immediately." 

**Goodbye/' I yelled, slamming down the receiver, 
and grabbing my hat. The Commissioner lived in 
the Back Bay, but at that time of the night the 
streets were almost empty and my automobile made 
short work of the trip. I picked up Mr. Nelson and 
drove him to the Federal Building. 

We entered his office and made an unsuccessful 
search for a warrant form. The Commissioner then 
went to the office of an Assistant United States At- 
torney, called the janitor, entered the room, took a 
search warrant from its accustomed place, and re- 
turned to his own office. He filled out the blank, 
sigfned it, and handed it to me. 

With regard to the obtaining of this warrant, I 
wish to interrupt my narrative long enough to make 
a reply to the charge, made later, that the United 
States Attorney's office was raided by Wilson. In 
fact, most of the papers came out with flaring head- 

The facts are exactly as I have related. There was 
no "raid" or second-story work in the District At- 
torney's Office. This was an inspired charge, foment- 
ed by the corporeal outpost of the "wets" in Con- 
gress, George Holden Tinkham. 



A few days after the Quincy House raid, Congress- 
man Tinkham blew into the Federal Building, and 
breathed the germs of his Anti-Volstead temper 
about the corridors. 

United Stntes Attorney Robert O. Harris caught 
the fever. Judge Harris is a pliable, accommodat- 
ing, harmless sort of official who lends dignity to his 
office because he looks as if he were a hard working 
man. Of course, all the genuine work is supposed 
to be done by his assistants. 

When Congressman Tinkham came along with a 
tomahawk sharpened for Wilson's scalp, Judge 
Harris picked it up and feebly tried to wield it. 
With the puny bluster of which he is capable, he an- 
nounced that he was "indignant" because his office 
had been "broken into." He was quoted as saying 
that he did not believe in such spectacular law en- 
forcement as raids on G. O. P. banquets, and that his 
office should have been consulted. The Judge hap- 
pened to be in Washington at the time of the raid, 
and the natural inference from newspaper articles 
attributed to him was that the sanctity of the Quincy 
House G. O. P. liquor-lubricating party never would 
have been violated if he had been in Boston. The 
fact is that law enforcement officials can not afford to 
wait for "stop-and-go^* signals from Judge Harris 
before getting busy. My custom is to move by the 

To return to the raid, Commissioner Nelson's war- 
rant was my red tag **ticket" to the Quincy House 
banquet. I hurried out of the Federal Building, and 
on Devonshire Street picked up six of my agents 
who had been hastily gathered together by one of 
my assistant deputies, Sullivan. I instructed the men 
to scatter and meet me in the alley-way which leads 
from Cornhill into Brattle Street. 

Five minutes later, about 10.^5 P. M., we gathered 
at the appointed place. I selected two agents and 
started with them for the hotel door. My purpose 



was to reconnoiter before "pulling" the party, in or- 
der to ascertain for my own satisfaction the source 
of supply. 

I had only to enter the lobby to know that the 
trail was extremely hot. The lobby was heavy with 
the odors of hard liquor. I have been a teetotaler 
all my Hfe and I do not beleive that my nostrils d,xj 
any more sensitive to the smell of whiskey than those 
of any other person. Just how any man with normal 
senses could have walked through the lobby of the 
Quincy House that night without suspecting what 
was going on upstairs is a mystery to me. 

I am sure no one in the lobby recognized me. We 
strolled leisurely across to the stairway and went up 
one flight. From the end of a long corridor there 
came muffled echoes of laughter and hilarity. I 
passed two side corridors and then turned into a long 
corridor leading directly to a closed door. I might 
add at this time that I did not know where the liquor 
was being dispensed, but was able to go straight to 
it following the odor and the noise. 

I fouhd the door to the sanctum, dedicated to the 
God of Bacchus, locked. Guarding this door, in the 
role of sentry, was ex-Senator Charles H. Innes, no- 
torious Ward Seven boss, long Czar of the G. O. P. 
City machine and reputed in be an intimate friend 
of Governor Channing H. Cox and Senator Henry 
Cabot Lodge. Mr. Innes knows me well but for 
some reason which I shall not attempt to analyze, he 
failed to recognize me. 

**How do you get in," I inquired. 

"Knock on the door and they will let you in," he 

I knocked once, then twice, and the door was 
opened. . There was too much noise coming from the 
inside for anyone to have heard the first knock. Al- 
though the red tag was the symbol entitling the hold- 
er to an unlimited number of drinks, those in charge 
of the private dining-room were apparently so far 

■..'.:. v:..- 21 


gone that they could not tell whether my agents and 
I possessed red tags or wore bathing suits. 

The first thing which greeted my eyes was a 
drunken politician stretched out on the floor near the 
wall. And I may anticipate my story by saying that 
this poor fellow who gave silent testimonial to the 
effectiveness of the 'White Horse';' kick, remained 
blissfully ignorant of the somewhat agitated proceed- 
ings which went on later. 

The private dining room was some forty feet in 
length and possibly half as wide. It was furnished 
with a piano and two long tables tastily covered with 
long white tablecloths and some three or four hun- 
dred glasses of all kinds, all either empty or emptied. 
Behind the booze laden bar or tables were stationed 
two bartenders with the usual white coat and apron. 
Within easy reach of the dispensers of liquors were 
six galvanized washtubs filled with cocktails and 
some six peach baskets filled with "White Horse" 

Nobody paid any attention to my agents or to me. 
Over in one comer the pianist was pounding out wild 
jazz, and two men who had clearly sipped the sweet 
nectar of the Innes-G. O. P. cocktails were outdoing 
each other in a vocal discord contest. The white- 
coated barkeepers were pattering here and there, 
clinking glasses, crunching ice and mixing up more 
drinks. I walkd up to the tables, picked up a par- 
tially emptied bottle, and smelled of it. There was 
no question as to its alcoholic content. One smell 
was sufficient, and judging by the appearance and 
antics of some of the assembled "red tag" gentlemen, 
one drink would have been more than sufficient. 
One of the bartenders looked at me innocently, and 
asked "What will you have?" 

I did not answer, but walked around behind the 
bar and inspected the paraphernalia behind the 

The bartenders appeared much amused at my ac- 



tions and up to this time no one else had paid any 
attention. At this point one of the saturnalian 
revellers stepped up to the table and asked for an- 
other cocktail. I stepped between the bartender and 
the thirsty "law and order" disciple, and said **This 
has gone far enough. No more booze will be served 

"How come?" said the other fellow indignantly, 
"Have a heart. Can't you see my red tag. I was 
told the sky was the limit. I demand another drink." 

I then announced myself as Wilson, the Prohibi- 
tion Chief. I shall never forget the look of helpless 
dismay that came over this man*s face. He was 

"Oh, Charlie," he said, turning to some of the 
other men in an unbelieving way, "what do you know 
about this. Wilson's with us." 

The jazz music in the corner ended in a crashing 
discord and the "red tag" champions of law and or- 
der, many of them in various stages of intoxication, 
crowded about me. I ordered my two agents to 
gather up the whiskey bottles and the carafes of gin 
cocktails, and place them in a corner. Most of the 
guests were too stupified to do anything but watch 
operations with an air of amazement. So much 
liquor had found its way into their stomachs that it 
took some time for the real purport of the raid to 
percolate into their befuddled brains. I placed two 
of my agents as guards over the contraband, and 
started out to get my other men. I had no sooner 
reached the corridor when I was surrounded by poli- 
ticians importuning me to "quit and forget it." 
They tried to stop me by putting their arms around 
me and begged me in the name of the G. O. P, to 

Charley Innes, the outpost of the whiskey sanctum, 
had partially recovered his poise, and led the assault 
of the repentant ones who deprecated my efforts to 
prove law and order or law enforcement applied 



equally to Republican politicians and to striking 

**Wilson," said he, "you are killing yourself poli- 
tically. Don't do itj'* 

"What has politics to do with law enforcement," 
I inquired. 

And he answered : "Why, you are raiding the Gov- 
ernor's banquet. You will ruin your own party. 
We will never stand for this. You are cutting your 
own throat." 

I do not know what else they said to me or what 
else I said in reply. There was such an uproar of 
talking, threatening and bickering that I was im- 
mensely relieved when I had run the gauntlet of the 
politicians assembled in the corridor and was allowed 
to pass on to the hotel lobby. 

I had no sooner passed out of sight than the same 
politicians rushed into the private dining room and 
informed my agents that Wilson had been fixed up, 
and that he had gone home. The agents were ad- 
vised to quietly beat it, as they had raided a big G. 
O. P. banquet. My men refused to leave, however, 
asserting that they would not believe Wilson had 
been fixed until they brought him back in a coffin. 

I immediately summonsed the other agents, placed 
three on guard at the doors and took one man and 
entered the main dining room on the first floor without 
announcing myself. I am pleased to state that I did 
not discover any evidence that would lead me to be- 
lieve liquor hsd been served in that room, although 
I saw plenty of evidence that some of the men present 
had drank considerable more than they knew how to 

Calling another agent into the main dining room I 
left two to watch proceedings, while I took the other 
two agents and went back to the private dining room. 

In the meanwhile, a large number of the banquet- 
ers had found the strain of political speeches too 
boresome, and had come up in search of liquid refresh- 



ment. When I arrived I found fifty or more *'red 
tagged'* men crowded into the room, talking and 
whispering in small groups. More of the revellers 
from down stairs kept rushing to the bar room as 
news of the raid spread, until fully a hundred "red 
tagged" politicians had clearly convicted themselves 
of full knowledge of the disgraceful orgy upstairs. 

I then learned from the agents who had been guard- 
ing the liquor another interesting fact, namely, the 
affair was entirely legal. The boozing politicians 
had a permit from the State Director of Prohibition, 
my immediate superior, and the Director himself, 
Mr. Elmer C. Potter, was a guest at the banquet. 
This phase of the situation will be covered in the 
next chapter. 

Then, without further ado, I directed the seizure 
of all the liquor and a part of the paraphernalia 
which had been used in the room. This was later 
loaded into an automobile and taken to my office in 
the Old South Building. Thirty-six carafes of gin 
cocktails were found, sixteen of which had been 
emptied, and four bottles filled with "White Horse" 
whiskey. Apparently, some twenty bottles of 
"White Horse" had been emptied prior to the break- 
ing up of the festivities. 

While we were packing up the "White Horse", and 
cocktail carafes, there was a great deal of talking 
and fatherly advice for Wilson. Many of the men 
urged me to call off my agents, and they would see 
to it that I was well cared for. One of the men who 
did a great deal of talking, but said little, was Robert 
J. Bottomley, Charley Innes' chief messenger boy, 
•I'ld at one time a most enthusiastic, -ven if unsuc- 
cessful, candidate for Attorney General. It is to Mr. 
Bottomley's credit, or discredit, as you may choose 
to take it, that he did a great deal of laughing and 
took the affair as a huge joke. 

I recognized a large number of other men, but to 
parade their names before the public would be vicious 



and wholly uncalled-for. I have no doubt that many 
of the yotmger politicians were stampeded into this 
affair by the mass action resulting from the imwis« 
and lawless actions of false political leaders. I will 
say, however, that while the dry agents were packing 
up the bottles and decanters, an employee of the 
hotel rushed in with a hurry-up order for a bottle of 
"White Horse" whiskey for a Judge of the Superior 
Court of Massachusetts. 

The Judge*s name was mentioned quite distinctly 
and is known to several of my agents. 

When we returned downstairs with our spoils, the 
banquet to the Governor had broken up. Some of 
those who had gone upstairs for a drink had returned 
to the banquet hall to spread the awful news. My 
agents later repeated to me some of the husky, whis- 
pered messages which they heard passed on by offi- 
cials at the head table. 

"Did you hear the news," said one high State 
official. "Wilson has raided the bar upstairs." 

"What," returned his neighbor, "you're crazy." 

The news apparently spread like wildfire and the 
banquet promptly broke up in a decidedly chilly at- 
p:csphere. As we passed through the lobby, hun- 
dreds of men were hurrying out. And there is no 
finer commentary on the whole disgraceful affair 
than the frantic endeavors on the following day bv 
men who were erroneously reported as being present 
to get newspaper publicity to the effect that they 
were not at the banquet. 

The argument as to my f oolhardiness in raiding the 
Governor's banquet was discussed quite vehemently 
by a number of well-known "pols/* when I was mak- 
ing my get-away from the hotel. 

"You won't last a week," said one. "I will give 
you just ^ivf; days before you get the grand bounce." 

"Why," said I? 

"Because you have brought disgrace on the Re- 


publican party," said he, "and the big fellows will 
not stand for it." 

These politicians were still talking when I broke 
away and returned to my office in the Old South 

It has been said that I staged this raid for 
spectacular rjffect, but if I had wanted to be sensa- 
tional I could have made the affair much more dis- 

If the Governor and other leading G. O. P. politi- 
cians have been quoted correctly, I raided so quietly 
that they did not even know that I had come and 
gone. If I had seen fit to make a thorough search 
under the tables and in other places in the main din- 
ing-room,which I had a perfect right to do with my 
search warrant, the affair would have been spectacu- 
lar enough to satisfy the most fastidious. Unfortun- 
ately, some people never know when they have been 
treated decently. 

I have been told by many leading politicians that 
I should have given the Governor and the other red 
tagged gentlement twenty minutes warning before 
raiding. If I had done so the publicity attending 
the Quincy House G. O. P. drinking contest would 
have been still more sensational and injurious to the 
party. Prohibition would have indeed been a farce. 
I never warned the small fry when raiding, what 
manner of justice would have been served if the 
wealthier and more influential culprits were allowed 
sufficient time in which to make a get away. It is 
such law enforcement methods that lead to anarchism 
and general discontent. 



Chapter III. 

One phase of the Quincy House Raid that I will 
treat in this chapter is the charge that it was inspired 
by personal spite, or because of a spirit of vengeance 
against my immediate superior, Prohibition Director 
Elmer C. Potter. I did not know that Mr. Potter 
was present at this particular banquet or that he had 
issued a permit for the transportation of liquors to 
the Quincy House. As a matter of fact, as already 
stated in a previous chapter, I did not know that 
there was to be a Republican banquet until 7:30 P. 
M. on the night of the raid. I was more surprised 
when I learned that a permit had been issued for 
the transportation of the liquor used at this dis- 
graceful Constitution-breaking event than any of my 
agents. In fact, when the matter was first brought 
to my attention, I refused to pay any attention, hot 
believing that such a thing could be possible. Finally, 
one of my agents insisted that I look at the permit. 
I have two affidavits in my possession at the present 
time to bear out the truth of this statement. 

The day following the Quincy House raid and for 
that matter every day since that historical and hys- 
terical evening, I have been charged with staging the 
raid because of the so-called '* Wilson-Potter" feud." 
This statement is as absurd and false as the other 
mouthings of the lawless politicians who sought some 
excuse for their own connection with this outrage- 
ous desecration of the Constitution and the sacred 
trusts of their constituents. 

There is a definite psychology in the stories which 
linked me in a "spite-feud" with Mr. Potter. When 
a man is guilty, he immediately seeks to avert sus- 
picion by pointing his finger at another, and saying: 
"Look you, look you, I am not guilty. There is the 
guilty man." That is the reason the politicians have 


sought to atone for their own shortcomings by trying 
to represent Wilson as a "spite-fiend." 

If the men who thus dragged the Constitution in 
the filth of the gutter are to be permitted to remain 
in control of the Republican party, what faith, I ask, 
can we have in Massachusetts? 

I did know, of course, that Governor Cox was pres- 
ent and hat he was the guest of honor, but did not 
know that it was to be the occasion for announcing his 
candidacy for a second term. It would not have 
maae any difference, however, if I had known this 
fact. I did not give the question of any effect the 
raid might have upon his re-election any considera- 
tion. I was a law enforcement officer and I knew the 
law was being violated. My duty was plain. Party 
affiliations or friendships or sympathy for any par- 
ticular public official had nothing to do with the 

It was said that the raid was inspired to ruin Gov- 
ernor Cox politically. My tip did not come from a 
politician, and if the affair had been a political frame- 
up more care would have been taken to see that it 
was actually carried through to a satisfactory con- 

It was only chance that brought me back to my 
office that night. The men working with me at the 
Rossmore Hotel, the place raided about 5 :30 o'clock 
on the evening of the Quincy House banquet were 
unable to continue with me f ^ • another raid, and so 
I returned to my office for additional help. If my 
plans had not miscued, I would have been in another 
city during the G. O. P. love-feast. 

Practical politicians who are trying to frame a 
governor or an entire political party do not trust to 
chance. Their plans are well laid and executed with 

If His Excellency, the Governor, Channing H. 
Coxj was betrayed on the evening of December 20, 
1921, it was by his most intimate friend and closest 



political henchman, the Hon. Charles H. Innes. 

Either Innes betrayed the Governor or His Excel- 
lency was cognizant or favored the second floor 
booze party, there is no other alternative. 

Granting the worst, that is, admitting for the sake 
of argument, that I knew the State Director was pres- 
ent at the banquet, and that he had issued a permit 
for said banquet, and that I was gunning for the 
political scalp of Governor Channing H. Cox, my 
personal motive, whether good or bad, could not in 
any way clear the gentlemen who were present or had 
knowledge of the disgraceful drinking debauchery 
staged in an upstairs chamber. 

Most of the bootleggers captured during my 
regime as Chief Enforcement Officer were captured 
through some spite tip trom a former accomplice. 
Most criminals, as a matter of fact, are caught 
through leaks from their most intimate pals. 

Every bootlegger and every "wet" politician in 
the State was gunning for my scalp and, in fact, 
many of the "wet" politicians are still looking for 
some technicality on which to hang me. If I had 
stubbed my toe as Prohibition Chief and been 
framed by some "near'' statesman, whose booze 
joint I had raided, how much sympathy would I have 
received ? 

The way of the transgressor is hard. The safest 
road is the straight and narrow way, so aptly de- 
scribed in the Bible. 

I have absolutely no sympathy for Governor Cox. 
He was a voluntary guest at the Quincy House ban- 
quet. It was staged in his honor, and certainly any 
of his wishes relative to the dispensing of liquor on 
the second floor or anywhere else in the hotel would 
have been respected. 

He was in the hands of his most intimate friends. 
Ernest J. Goulston, host of the evening, was his ad- 
vertising manager during his campaign for the Gov- 
ernorship, and according to Mr. Goulston's own ad- 



mission, has known the Governor intimately for 

I wish to state at this point that I do not agree 
with the Anti-Saloon League's statement in which 
Mr. Goulston's motives in staging the Quincy House 
banquet are impeached. 

The League officials assert the affair was a huge 
advertising scheme to boost the new cafeteria in the 
Quincy House. I do not believe that such a state- 
ment is in accordance with the facts. Mr. Goulston, 
(however I may differ from him on the liquor question 
and on politics in general), is not that type of man. I 
have talked with a number of newspaper men who 
know him intimately and are doing business with 
him practically every day. They all agree that Ern- 
est J. Goulston is a typical "go-through" advertis- 
ing man, and that when he manages a banquet, or any 
other party, he puts on the best that money will buy. 
Few, cognizant of the facts relative to the Quincy 
House banquet, will gainsay that from a joy-produc- 
ing, stonhach-satisfying standpoint, the famous 
"White Horse" revelry was a glorious success. 

Mr. Elmer C. Potter, who issued the permit, ad- 
mits that he is a close friend of the Governor, al- 
though the Governor has not admitted any particular 
intimacy on his part. 

Mr. Harold G. Kern, the holder of the permit, is a 
very close friend of Mr. Goulston, in fact, he is re- 
ported as being associated with him in his advertising 
business. Certainly, Mr. Kern was not a willing 
partner to any frame-up on his Excellency, the Gov- 

Last, but not least, the Honorable Charles H. 
Innes, outside guardian at the portals of "wet" bliss, 
was not a party to the betrayal of his last ace in the 
political game. 

Charley Innes and Governor Cox hail from the 
same ward. Mr. Innes was the Governor's most ar 
dent sponsor when he was first elected to the Com- 



mon Council, and then later when he was elected to 
the House of Representatives, and subsequently pro- 
moted to the Speakership. He was still his staunch 
supporter when Speaker Cox was elected Lieutenant- 
Governor, and then in 1920 Governor of the great 
Commonwealth of Massachusetts. 

Charley Innes* political history is quite interesting. 
He was a member of the Common Council in 1896. 
the next year was elected to the Legislature, and later 
served two terms in the Senate. Mr. Innes is credit- 
ed with being more of a political Czar in his own 
ward than Martin Lamasney the Mahatma of Ward 
Five. Certainly, he has been more successful in de- 
livering the votes of his ward. He is the Disraeli of 
Republican State politics. The following picture of 
Mr. Innes by the "practical painter,^ a writer for a 
Boston newspaper, eighteen years ago, is interesting. 
According to this writer, "Mr. Innes and his follow- 
ers are very practical, very practical. They slay 
their enemies, high and low, in both parties and at 
any time, and those who think they can carry Ward 
Ten without the aid of Mr. Innes are usually doomed 
to a regrettable awakening.** 

In view of the close and cordial association of 
Governor Cox, Charley Innes, and Ernest J. Goul- 
ston, it is extremely difficult to believe that the Gov- 
ernor was absolutely without knowledge of the G. O. 
P. liquor "love-feast** on the second floor of the 
Quincy House on the evening of the famous raid. 

His statement, given out the day following the 
raid, does not sound as well as many he has since is- 
sued at Christian Endeavor and other Church func- 
tions. According to practically every newspaper in 
Boston, he was quoted on December 21st as follows : 

*T saw nothing out of the way at the dinner, and 
I hope that Mr. Wilson felt he was performing his 
duty and that he had no other purpose. It is the 
duty of every officer to enforce the law, and I hope 
it will always be done." 



What does his Excellency mean by "he hopes Mr. 
Wilson felt he was performing his duty?" How did 
the Governor feel? Mr. Wilson's emotions are of 
little consequence or the motive that prompted the 
raid. What the people of Massachusetts were inter- 
ested in at that time, and what they are still interest- 
ed in, is whether or not the Governor of this great 
Commonwealth was a part and parcel of this dis- 
graceful Constitution-flouting affair. 

In view of the above weak-kneed statement and the 
fact that the Governor has still failed to repudiate 
the active managers of the "second floor bar room", 
it is going to be difHcult to convince the dry forces 
of Massachusetts that he was entirely innocent. 

When Mr. Cox repudiates Charles H. Innes and 
Charles disowns the Governor, black will be white, 
and the bona fide dry forces of Massachusetts will 
admit that his Excellency is dry from conviction 
rather than from urgent, imperative necessity. I am 
not prepared to state that the Governor speaks one 
way and drinks another, but I have no hesitation in 
asserting that his "dry" votes have been from policy 
rather than from conviction, and with such an ardeat 
"wetV as Charley Innes for an adviser, the pressure 
of policy, in some instances, must have been mighty 

Governor Cox is a congenial, likeable man. He is 
termed as a good fellow among men. No one could 
ever picture him as an outstanding figure, urging the 
public to awaken to its responsibilities and opportun- 
ities. He is, like many other hand-picked machine- 
made candidates, absolutely safe. If he was not 
amiable, pliable and amenable to party discipline he 
could never have received the endorsement and whole 
hearted support of the grand High Mogul of the 
G. O. P. councils, Hon. Charles H. Innes. When 
the boys have a good time, the Governor is a happy 
member of the party ; when a funeral is to be attend- 
ed, possibly the burial of "John Barleycorn*" he is 



as sober faced as the most sober. When it is 
necessary to cover party discrepancies with a smoke 
screen, he is a very forceful champion of law and 
order. When the boys want a side show and drunk- 
en debauchery in conjimction with a Republican love- 
feast he lacks the moral courage to say NO. 

I honestly believe that the Governor was victim- 
ized by those in charge of the liquor dispensary at 
the Quincy House, December 20, because advantage 
was taken of his well-known good nature, and easy 
going methods, but I can not sympathize with him in 
his inability to raise a restrictive hand when certain 
wet politicians would jeopardize not only his own 
political future, but that of the party which has en- 
trusted him its leadership. I believe we are face to 
face with times when strong men, men of genuine, 
action-producing convictions are needed. Men who 
can say NO with as much compelling decisiveness as 
they can give the order to "go forward*' when in the 

Other statements issued the day following the 
Quincy House raid are well worth consideration. 

POTTER— **If Mr. Wilson believed the law was be- 
ing violated, it was his duty to take such steps as he 
saw fit. 

COOK — "I had absolutely no knowledge that liquor 
was being served, and certainly saw none at the din- 
ner. The first I learned that liquor had been served 
was when I saw Mr. Wilson as I was leaving the 
5iotel. I disapprove of its having been there. It 
was a violation of the law. I believe it is the duty 
of public officials to enforce the law, and they should 
set an example by refraining from all violations of 

nothing to say at present." 




saw no liquor, I got no liquor — ^but I got there late." 

The "if" in Mr. Potter's statement is rather die- 
concerting. Is it possible that the prohibition di- 
rector in Massachusetts had some doubt as to 
whether the law was being violated? It would seem 
from this statement, that he was still in doubt on the 
day immediately following the raid, Wednesday, but 
by Saturday of the same week, he had been thorough- 
ly convinced that the law was violated. Perhaps 
some '*wet pol" advised a revised statement 
Leastwise, his statement that he would have raided 
the place himself, if he had known what was going 
on, would lead even the most unsophisticated to be- 
lieve he had seen the light. 

No man could possibly take exception to the 
masterly statement of the Hon. Frederic W. Cook. 
Mr. Cook is every inch a statesman and is an honor 
to the party which has made him Secretary of the 
Commonwealth. I met Mr. Cook on two different 
occasions outside the Quincy House on the evening 
of the raid during my search for the U. S. Commis- 
sioner, and know that his knowledge of the banquet 
must have been very limited. 

The statement of the State Treasurer, Mr. Jackson, 
is rather illuminating even if he was a bit hard on 
some who would plead complete ignorance of the 
whole affair. 

Why did the Lieut. Gov., Alvan T. Fuller, refrain 
from making a statement? I have it from the ve.y 
best of authority, that he did give a statement to at 
least one newspaper reporter which he retracted be- 
fore publication. It has been suggested that since 
the Lieutenant Governor has such an excellent record 
for outspoken veracity, regardless of whom he hits 
and such a poor reputation for amenability to the 
political recipe of covering up any party mistakes, 
his statement would have admitted too much 
knowledge of what was actually going on in the up- 
stairs chamber, and thus have been misinterpreted 



by his political enemies, as an attempt to make poli- 
tical capital out of the misfortune of other G. O. P. 
leaders. An amusing incident relative to the Quincy 
House raid is the fact that the Lieutenant Governor 
severely criticized me, that very afternoon for not 
having raided a certain big public banquet he had at- 
tended at which booze was served very indiscrimin- 
ately. He said that prohibition was a farce, as long 
as the big fellows could drink with impunity. I in- 
formed him that the banquet he mentioned was 
staged by a Foreign Delegation in America for the 
Peace Conference, and that if I had attempted to raid 
such a place the political framers and technically 
trained lawyers would have proven that whatever 
liquor was served belonged to the foreign delegation. 

I believe the Lieutenant Governor was correct. Mr. 
Fuller, like many other respectable law-loving public 
officials has been a victim of the false standard of 
political hypocrisy, established and maintained by 
such men as Charley Innes, who claim to be the 
staunchest supporters of the Republican party, and 
yet for a little personal stomach satisfaction jeopar- 
dize the welfare of the entire G. O. P. organization, 
to attend parties where liquor was served openly ir 
even surreptiously that sooner or later I would raid 
such a party when he was present. As luck would 
have it I raided the Quincy House, at which he was 
present, that very night. The Lieutenant Governor 
did not give me any inkling on the afternoon of the 
twentieth, that there was to be a party at the Quincy 
House, and I imagine he was as much surprised as 
any other public official when I descended upon the 
place. I shall not enter into any discussion whether 
all the guests in the Quincy House knew of the pri- 
vate booze room on the second floor, or not for it is 
of little consequence, as I believe the majority of the 
Republican notables present were victims of a vicious 
system, and like Lieutenant Governor Fuller depre- 



cated the condition but were at a loss how to rectify 
the hypocrisy without being grievously misundcr- 
stood by the public. I did something that had to be 
done, and if my motives have been misunderstood 
and maliciously maligned it is of no moment 
provided I have succeeded in knocking a cer- 
tain amount of hypocrisy out of high places. 
I do not condemn the rank and file of the 
Republican leaders who were present at the Quincy 
House banquet, but I do condemn Governor Channing 
H. Cox for his weak-kneed statement, his great per- 
sonal intimacy with those who staged the constitu- 
tion defying liquor dispensary on the second floor 
and his persistent refusal to in any way repudiate 
certain wet parasites who are a dead load to the Re- 
publican party. Governor Cox was the key to the 
whole situation. He was the one man who could 
have stood up with an emphatic NO, and have re- 
ceived the unanimous endorsement of all the law lov- 
ing citizens in Massachusetts. If Lieutenant Gov- 
ernor Fulled, Frank Allen, President of the Senate 
or a number of other estimable gentlemen who were 
present had attempted to sound the death knell of 
drunken debaucheries in side-rooms at public func- 
tions, their clarion call to duty would have been mis- 
interpreted, and the finger of scorn would have been 
turned upon them as politicial ingrates; aspirants to 
the governorship over the prostrate, mud-spattered 
form of Channing H. Cox. In this event, the Gov- 
ernor would have been pictured as the innocent vic- 
tim of malicious machinations n the part of an am- 
bitious unscrupulous politician. 

It fell to my lot to be the temporary champion of 
genuine law enforcement from the Top Down rather 
than from the Bottom Part Way Up and as a conse- 
quence, I have been suspected of every conceivable 
motive, except the correct one of impartial law en- 
forcement by a clique of booze-loving, law-defying, 
near statesmen. 



Chapter IV. 

"Have our courts broken down?" is a serious ques- 
tion and one that should not be dealt with lightly. 
For a long time it has been considered almost hi^h 
treason to even infer a judge was wrong or possibly 
subservient to some corporate interests, but when 
confronted with the plain, cold truth someone must 
call a spade a spade. 

We have many fine judges in Massachusetts, men 
of the very highest personal integrity, and of up- 
right moral character. On the other hand we have 
a few judges who are decidedly immoral and equally 
biased in their decisions. 

While I do not advocate the election of judges 
some feasible way must be found to rid the bench of 
undesirable characters. Our system of appointing 
judges for life, and thus making them absolutely in- 
dependent of public hysteria and political coercion is 
beautiful in theory but not always practical in opera- 
tion. If the judges were selected for their ability 
and unswerving fidelity to the public trust, there 
would be no question as to the merit of our present 
system, but when they are often selected by cheap, 
hand-picked, machine-made politicians who kow-tow 
to every special interest, and feed the public on un- 
adulterated bunkum, polished off with highfalutin , 
seemingly endless phraseology, there is serious ques- 
tion if occasionally selections as judges are not of the 
same inferior interest-serving, public-be-damned 

I am sorry to state that we have a few judges on 
the bench who drink to excess in absolute violation 
of the Constitutional law of the land, some who gam- 
ble more persistently and perniciously than the gam- 
blers who daily come before them for a sentence 
teeming with hypocrisy, and some whose immoral 



relations do not tend to breed respect for law and 

It is a weird mockery, a travesty on justice to ex- 
pect an impartial, intelligent, legally-sound decision 
from such wanton violators of both the laws of God 
and of man, A way must be found to remove such 
men and to select their successors from the best and 
most honorable legal men of the nation. 

The remedy is simple, elect men to the governor- 
ship who will be governed only by the dictation f 
their own conscience and select men for judges of the 
very highest legal ability and spotless character. 

The opponents of prohibition law enforcement are 
always harping on the hypocrisy attending the adop- 
tion of the Eighteenth Amendment and its enforce- 
ment. The hypocrisy is all to be found with those 
who are trying to nullify the law. As Prohibition 
Chief, I did not find it necessary to raid the homes 
of church people, whatever their creed, and when I 
found an out-and-out-Christian gentleman on the 
bench as j^dge, I found no lack of interest or co- 
operation on his part relative to the conviction and 
punishment of law violators. 

Where I found hypocrisy was in the high officials 
or judges who surreptitiously imbibe their booze in 
private and in public make a grand-stand play of 
enforcing the law with minor offenders while secret- 
ly striving to nullify all statutory provisions apply- 
ing to the more influential violators. 

The attorney who advises a client on the best way 
in which to circumvent a law, defends him when he 
is apprehended, and collects both ways, is the neari-'c 
thing to a hypocrite and a parasite on the face of the 
earth. Some of our lawyers live on such business 
and are a disgrace to their profession. I am glad 
that we have many, however, who will not stoop to 
such practice. 

It is a joke to arrest a bootlegger for peddling his 
poisonous, man-killing liquors and have a judge free 



him on some far-fetched technicality, or impose a 
minimum fine. 

What does a man care for a paltry fine when he s 
so degraded that he will sell moonshine loaded with 
wood alcohol, fusel oil, and other deadly ingredients? 
He marks the fine off to profit and loss and resimi?s 
operations the next day. 

Then the "wets" scream **the law cannot be en- 
forced. It breeds anarchy." Of course, it cannot be 
enforced effectively on a system of picayune fines. 
Neither could the law on stealing automobiles or safe- 
breaking be enforced if the thieves were never fined 
more than five to ten per cent of the value of their 

There are districts in Massachusetts where is is al- 
most impossible to secure a search warrant because 
of the open hostility of the presiding judge, and if 
perchance a warrant is obtained it is next to impos- 
sible to secure a conviction. If both the warrant and 
the conviction are obtained through good luck and 
hard fighting the fine is so inconsequential that the 
whole proceeding is farcical. 

Under the Federal law, the mere possession of 
liquor is prima facie evidence for a conviction. The 
burden of proof rests with the possessor and not 
with the Government. Under our present State 
laws, or rather lack of laws, it is not illegal to pos- 
sess an unlimited amount of liquor or to transport 
same at will throughout the Commonwealth or even 
to set up a liquor distillery in your home or place of 
business. The need of a State law conforming to 
the liquor laws is imperative. 

The only way in which a conviction can be ob- 
tained in a State court is to prove that the possessor 
of the liquor is keeping and exposing for saU. 
Sometimes it is very difficult to prove an actual sale, 
although the available circumstancial evidence may 
be sufficient to convict a man of murder. For ex- 
ample, a citizen, or I should say an alien, fur it is 



very seldom that citizens engage in the indefensible 
liquor traffic, starts in the wholesale manufacture of 
liquor. He sets up a distillery which is capable of 
an output of twenty or more gallons of moonshine 
a day. No man, however large his circle of acquaint- 
ances, could drink any such quantity of whiskey. 
Consequently, the natural inference is that he is mak- 
ing it for commercial purposes. Most of the judges 
in Massachusetts will convict such a man on circum- 
stantial evidence on the ground that he is not making 
his liquor to dump down the sink, and obviously 
must be keeping and exposing his product for sah^ 

I have been to judges in Boston and nearby cities 
who have refused to issue a search warrant when the 
place to be searched was reeking with the odor and 
filth of a distillery ; places where the other tenants of 
a house complained that booze was being made on 
such a large scale that their health was being under- 
mined by the foul and noxious fumes. I have had 
complaint from distracted wives and mothers about 
places selling such vile, brutalizing concoctions that 
the women feared for the safety of their children and 
their homes. When these poor discouraged heart- 
broken, mothers or wives dared not come before 
these judges, or in some cases when they did appear, 
no cognizance was taken of their pitiful cases. 

I have known of dives apparently so thoroughly 
protected by a certain class of judges that a search 
warrant could not be obtained on actual evidence of a 
sale. It is generally possible to find a legal techni- 
cality in any law if the presiding justice is so dis- 
posed. In other cases, the search warrant was issued 
so grudgingly and with so much hesitation that the 
**hell-ketchen", or "man wrecking" dispensary was 
tipped off long before it could be raided. 

It is because of this attitude on the part of some 
judges and the fact that a few are sitting on the 
bench who are clearly mentally and physically in- 
competent, that I advocate some change in our 



method of selecting judges. My idea of the immu- 
tabiHty of our courts has been radically changed by 
some of my farcical and disgusting experiences as a 
Prohibition Chief. 

The greatest single stumbling-block to prohibition 
in Massachusetts is United States Commissioner 
William H. Hayes, the Mr. Pickwick of the Boston 
Federal Building. He has freely admitted on num- 
erous occasions that he has absolutely no use for the 
Volstead Act, or any of its provisions, and his actions 
in court are consistently in accord with his expressed 
opinions. Search warrants are obtained with the ut- 
most difficulty and when cases are brought before 
him, it is generally the Federal prohibition agents 
who are tried rather than the defendants. Few ques- 
tions are asked of the defendants, while agents are 
put through a most strenuous and sarcastic third de- 
gree. He has been so abusive to Boston policemen 
appearing before him as witnesses, that it is practi- 
cally impossible to get a Boston patrolman to appear 
in his court. Many violators of the liquor laws ap- 
parently do not deem an attorney necessary in the 
court of Commissioner Hayes. This is not the case, 
however, before such United States Commissioners 
as Goodspeed of New Bedford, Fletcher of Worces- 
ter, Rice of Springfield, and Wood of Pittsfield, and 
as a matter of fact, it is not a common practice in 
any court. When a man is arrested for a law vio- 
lation, his first act of self preservation is to rush to 
an attorney for legal advice. Attorneys trying liquor 
rasc5. in the Federal Building at Boston before any 
other U. S. Commissioner invariably continue them 
until Mr. Hayes is sitting. In the famous Quinc}'- 
House raid trial, the first legal skirmish on the part 
of the defendants was to take the case away from 
United States Commissioner Nelson so that it might 
be tried before Commissioner Hayes. This move 
was unsuccessful and as a consequence one of the 
defendants was. held for the grand jury. 



Cases were thrown out of court by the Commis- 
sioner on the merest techr xalities, and whenever it 
was a case of veracity, between an agent and a boot- 
legger, the latter's statement appeared to carry great- 
er weight. I have a number of affidavits in my pos- 
session showing some very unusual decisions or an- 
tics on the part of the Commissioner. In one case, 
after filling out a search warrant he deliberately read 
the address and the name of the premises to be 
searched in a sufficiently loud voice for a number of 
bootleggers to overhear. 

It is needless to say that this raid was unsuccess- 
ful. Another affidavit relates how the Commission- 
er allowed a well-known liquor attorney to examine 
a search warrant for a Lowell hotel, prior to giving 
same to the agent. When the raid was staged a few 
hours later, the proprietor met us with a smile, with 
the remark "You are too late, boys." 

Another affidavit describes a hearing before the 
Commissioner in which eveiy effort was apparently 
made to mkke a public spectacle out of the agents 
handling the case. At the close of the hearing, 
when the Commissioner, as usual, was about to dis- 
charge the defendant, a special United States Assist- 
ant Attorney told him that he must either decide that 
two of my agents were absolute liars or find the de- 
fendant guilty. The defendant was discharged, the 
obvious inference being thai the agents were liars i.i 
the Commissioner's opinion. 

I have a number of affidavits in which Mr. Hayes 
has publicly reprimanded agents for what he termed 
*Merelections of duty,** said breeches of "Hell Kitch- 
en** ethics being founded on the false assertions of 
bar room derelicts. The same affidavits recite in- 
stances in which he has advised in open court before 
bar proprietors and their ever present degenerate, 
bleary-eyed, rum-soaked, gin-guzzling hangers-on, 
the use of force on the sligthest miscue in proprieties 
of law. It was of no consequence whether said er- 



rors in judgment were technical or unintentional. 
One agent was roundly abused and the men attack- 
ing him were freed because said agent, when set up- 
on in a bar room, failed to state that he was a Fed- 
eral officer. The agent had testified in court that 
he announced his identity, but in as much as the 
"bums" attacking bim had testified to the contrary, 
the agent*s testimony was not competent. 

A typical illustration of the well-nigh im- 
possibility of obtaining a search warrant in some 
instances is the Pine Grove Inn case of the summer 
of 1921, and the statement which I am about to make 
regarding this affair is backed up by an affidavit 
signed by two of my agents and myself. 

On October 7, 1921, I drove a party consisting of 
two of my agents and two reputable ladies to the 
Pine Grove Inn in Marlboro at about ten o'clock in 
the evening. Fearing that I might be recognized 
because of the rather unusual publicity that I had re- 
ceived, I remained in the automobile while my agents 
and the ladies entered the Inn. They took a window 
table where I could clearly watch the proceedings. 
After obtaining the confidence of their waiter, they 
succeeded in securing drinks of liquor at the table 
and also a half pint for their supposed consumption 
on the way home. With this absolute evidence that 
the Pine Grove Inn was illegally trafficking in liquor 
at that time, I went to United States Commission \- 
Hayes and requested a search warrant for the fol- 
lowing evening (Saturday). The Commissioner 
positively refused to issue such a warrant after he 
found out that neither my agents nor myself knew 
the name of the waiter making the sale or whether 
or not the proprietor actually saw said sale, require- 
ments impossible of fulfillment without arousing the 
suspicionof the proprietor. I was so determined to 
get the Pine Grove Inn after the refusal of the Com- 
missioner to give me a warrant, that I went directly 
to the warrant clerk in the City of Marlboro and ob- 



tained a state "ticket". Armed with this warrant, 
and assisted by the police of Marlboro, the Inn was 
raided and sufficient evidence obtained for a convic- 
tion in the State Court, a much more difficult pro- 
ceeding than under the Federal law. I might men- 
tion numerous other instances, but it is hardly neces- 

What I am trying to prove is the hypocrisy of the 
"wet" interests when they assert that the prohibitory 
law cannot be enforced while doing every thing in 
their power to prevent even a reasonable trial. It 
can and will be enforced when the public is brought 
to a realization of the many inexcusable obstacles 
placed in the way of those actually striving to en- 
force the law. 

Conditions in other U. S. Commissioners' Districts 
in Massachusetts are in direct contrast to the Boston 
situation. It was a pleasure to work with such com- 
missioners as Alexander Goodspeed of New Bedford, 
and John L. Rice of Springfield. Both of these men 
are exceptionally well posted in the legal technique 
of their offices and carry out their duties as if they 
felt some personal responsibility in the conviction 
and punishment of liquor violators. The honor of 
our courts is safe in the hands of such men, and if 
the country \ h favored with judges and commis- 
sioners of this type, there would be no occasion for 
anyone to advocate the recall or election of judges. 
The same is true of Commissioners Fletcher of Wor- 
cester and Wood of Pittsfield. 

Certain events on the night of the Quincy House 
raid were not included in the two preceeding chap- 
ters as th :y y tre reserved for consideration in co*i- 
nection with the long and — up to the time of the 
printing of this book — unfinished court battle to 
have the raid case thrown out of Court. At th': 
time I raided the winery of the Republican revellers, 
one Harold G. Kern submitted to me a permit 
purporting to give him the right to transport 



five cases of gin and two cases of whiskey from his 
residence in West Roxbury to his winter residence, 
room 46, Quincy House. This permit bore the hu }- 
ber stamp of Elmer C. Potter, State Prohibition Di- 
rector, and appeared to be proper in every respect 
except that it had been issued for an apparently very 
improper purpose. 

The mockery and inconsistency of a system that 
makes possible the flashing of a legal permit in the 
face of an officer trying to perform his sworn duty 
is too disgusting for comment. An inexperienced 
agent might well have retreated, convinced that h**. 
was making an illegal raid. 

I do not excuse the State Director for issuing this 
permit and going to the same banquet. He passed 
it off with the remark that it was simply routine 
business. That is the trouble with his office; there 
is too much routine business and too little personal 

The State Director may be absolutely blameless, 
like unto his Excellence the Governor, since both 
are reputed to be so easy going that such trivialities 
as Constitutional law-breaking do not ruffie the 
serenity of their happy lives. 

Blissful ignorance may be sublime in those charged 
with no public trust, but it does not appeal to the 
great mass of the people, who demand action and 
plenty of it in their paid officials. 

The Quincy House permit was the arch-camou- 
flage of a group of scheming politicians who deal 
solely in camouflage. To hear some of the politi- 
cians talk one would almost be led to believe that 
they considered this particular permit to have been 
legally issued and properly used, but to the unsophis- 
ticated, unschooled in the ways of the "wet" politi- 
cian, it is difficult to understand how liquor could 
be dispensed upon such a wholesale basis without 
violating both the spirit and the letter of the Vol- 
stead Act. The wholesale scale of distribution, the 



utter disregard of the usual methods of precaution, 
and the indignant amazement of those responsible 
for establishing a liquor-dispensary in connection 
with the G. O. P. *'love feast" isexcellent evidence 
that full protection was expected. 

To the average lay mind, the fight to set aside the 
search warrant used in this raid is the worst kind 
of hypocrisy. After finding such an abundance of 
liquor and every evidence that the Constitutional law 
of the land had been utterly disregarded, it is hard 
to understand the process of reasoning that would 
hold those responsible guiltless, if some legal techni- 
cality could be raised setting aside the search war- 
rant. The warrant used in this particular raid was 
issued in good faith and served absolutely in accord- 
ance with law. If by any chance the warrant is 
eventually set aside through the employment of 
high-class attorneys and the use of far-fetched legal 
technicalities, it will be a greater blow to law and 
order than if a thousand of the minor culprits unable 
financially to employ such an array of legal talent 
should escape punishment after staging a similar 

No one has attempted to gainsay that an unusual 
amount of liquor was seized in this famous raid. No 
one can gainsay that many of the "red tagged" 
guests were decidedly under the influence of liquor, 
or that the law was freely violated by those who par- 
ticipated. The only question raised to date is wheth- 
er or not the search warrant was technically legal. 

If the G. O. P. legal talent is able to prove through 
subterranean channels that the warrant was not made 
absolutely according to Hoyle, that some features of 
punctuation were not in the best form, or that all 
the ethereal exigencies were not fulfilled, my raid 
on the Quincy House will be called illegal and any 
evidence seized kept out of the court records. 

In view of the fact that every reader of a news- 
paper in Massachusetts knows exactly what trans- 



pired in the Quincy House that night, it seems abso- 
lutely absurd and the height of hypocrisy to resort 
to the subterfuge of a legal smoke-screen in the hope 
that some of the people may be sufficiently gullible 
to hold those participating guiltless. 

A contemptible feature of this disgraceful de- 
bauchery is the fact that those responsible did not 
even take a sporting chance. They not only violated 
the Constitutional law of the land with impunity, but 
felt comparatively safe in doing so. In other words, 
they stacked the cards with a legal, if absolutely in- 
defensible, permit for the transportation of their 
liquor, invited the supposedly responsible head of 
the prohibition department, and than drank and ca- 
roused with the utmost abandon. 

Most men admire a "game sport*', that is, an in- 
dividual who takes a real sporting chance, but no 
one has any use for the "dead beat*' who plays a 
sure thing. 

Thanks to the unswerving fidelity of United States 
Commissioner William S. Nelson, Harold G. Kern, 
the pe-^^t holder and acknowledged owner of the 
Q^'ncy . Guse liquor, has been held for the Grand 

"The Vvhite Horse" whiskey served at the Quincy 
House raici vvas of 1921 vintage, not 1918 as sworn 
to in the Ke:*n affidavit requesting a transportation 
permit. This ought to lead to a government charge 
of perjury. It is also safe to assume that the gin 
was acquired after the passage of the prohibition 
amendment rather than before, although I have no 
definite proof to back up this assertion other than 
the fact that Kern is a very young man, so young in 
fact that he was under age when he claimed to have 
had legal possession of the Quincy House liquor in 




Chapter V. 

In spite of the many court handicaps described in 
the preceding chapter, the persistent propaganda of 
the liquor interests and the pernicious influence of 
"wet" politicians who talk for public consumption, 
and drink for stomach consumption, prohibition has 
accomplished a tremendous amount of good. The 
favorable attitude of many large employers of labor 
is one of the best testimonials as to the stabilizing 
and man power conserving qualities of prohibition. 

Wayne B. Wheeler has said that the 18th Amend- 
ment is the greatest single piece of constructive leg- 
islation ever written by the hand of man. Every 
signpost raised by the prohibition laws on the high- 
way of human progress points clearly ahead to bet- 
ter things if the passer will but see it. The only 
trouble with the prohibition laws is that a portion 
of the people refuse to see the good and try to dress 
a sacred ideal in the garb and vestments of Satan. 

Let's face the truth. There is a persistent, malig- 
nant propaganda against prohibition — a cancerous 
germ in the body politic, nourished on the tainted 
money of the brewer and distiller and by the preju- 
dices of thousands who are unwilling to give up 
something for the common good. With many it is 
just plain stomach selfishness. 

The wet propagandist is sly and astute. He ig- 
nores the good and parades before our eyes only the 
bad things which in many instances are temporary 
and incidental. If it be shown that drunkenness ar- 
rests have increased from 1920 to 1921, he magnifies 
this, disregarding the fact that arrests for drunken- 
ness are still far below the records of pre-prohibition 
days. If it be the fortune of the prohibition officials 
to turn up an immense illicit distillery or to uncover 
a widespread smuggling plot, the wet theorist imme- 



diately accepts these things as evidence that more 
liquor is being consumed than ever before in the 
history of the United States. 

The problems of enforcement will be considered 
in a later chapter, but I would like to pause here, 
for a moment, to brand this argument as a vicious un- 
truth. It is ridiculous to suppose that any illicit 
traffic, under the very noses of an enforcement staff 
trained and sworn to prosecute it, can support an 
organization comparing even remotely with the great 
rum octopus which wound its tentacles about the 
limbs of the body politic and crushed out the life of 
thousands in pre-prohibition days. The old sluice- 
ways of the brewer and distiller, which poured their 
output of alcohol into every alley and corner saloon 
as regularly as the clock ticked away seconds in the 
life of the Nation, are closed for all time. In their 
places have sprung up scattered streams, fed by the 
rum runner and the backwoods distiller. This 
lawless traffic can never equal a small part of the 
organized system which prevailed under the old plan 
of Government regulation and taxation. 

There are certain definite things that prohibition 
has accomplished that may not be gainsaid. 

In the first place it has eliminated for all time the 
saloon and the brass rail, once the most insidious in- 
fluences in American life. The saloon, corrupter of 
morals and robber of the poor, has been buried in a 
tomb so strongly buttressed that even the wicked 
axes and battering ram of the wet propagandist will 
forever be turned aside by its bastions. 

In the heighth of the wet era there were nearly six 
hundred licensed saloons and nearly 1000 licensed 
places of all kinds in the city of Boston. Within 
the past two years 75% of these have dried up like 
desert oases in an August drouth. The specter of 
the bartender has almost faded from the picture of 
American life. Today only a few outposts of the 
bygone era are to be found on the streets of Bos- 



ton. Since the licensing of saloons was blotted out 
by the Volstead standard of one-half of one per cent, 
there are no accurate figures as to the numbers of 
bars which continue to do business in Boston; but 
my experience as enforcement agent has convinced 
me that less than one-fourth of them have survived. 

These places exist for the ostensible purpose of 
selling near-beer but many of them still cater to the 
outraged appetite of the drinker of something of 
the "hard*' variety. The liquor is sold in small quan- 
tities and at tremendous prices. The eye of the bar- 
tender is ever watchful for the unwelcome appear- 
ance of a Federal agent. Each surreptitious move is 
a part of a well-conceived scheme for eluding the 
agent who may take him unawares. 

The second convincing result of prohibition is the 
reduction in the number of arrests for drunkenness, 
not only in Massachusetts, but throughout the United 

A glance at the following table, covering the ar- 
rests for drunkenness in 1917 and 1921 in the thir- 
teen Massachusetts cities which were wet in 1917, 
brings but one conclusion: 

1915 1920 

Popula- Popula- Arrests 

tion tion 1917 1921 

Boston 745,439 748,060 72,897 30,409 

Chelsea 43,426 43,184 1,885 979 

Chicopee 30,138 36,214 780 223 

Gloucester 24,478 22,947 776 185 

Holyoke 60,816 60,203 1,652 598 

Lawrence 90,257 94,270 2,962 1,860 

Lowell 107,978 112.759 4,375 1,833 

Marlboro 15,250 15,028 351 67 

New Bedford 109,568 121,217 2,427 1,167 

Northampton 21,654 21,957 558 122 



Pittsfield 39,607 41,763 1,996 361 

Springfield 102,971 129,614 2,622 8&+ 

Worcester 162,967 179,754 7,257 2,981 

Every city having open saloons in 1917 had more 
arrests that year than in either 1920 or 1921 the 
two prohibition years and with two exceptions the 
1920 and 1921 arrests added together do not equal 
the arrests for the last year under license, 1917. 

One may foolishly inquire why drunkenness was 
not wholy eliminated. Drunkenness will not 
completely pass imtil the cause of dnmkenness has 
been ruthlessly wiped from the surface of the United 
States, not until an outraged public has risen up in 
wrath to demand genuine enforcement and a new 
generation with new ideals and contempt for old 
traditions of evil has grown up to supersede the 

The "wets" have made much capital over the fact 
that there has been an increase in the number of 
arrests for drunkenness during the past year over the 
first year of Constitutional prohibition. This is not 
such an alarming feature of the enforcement prob- 
lem as the foes of prohibition would have us believe; 
and for two reasons, first because the number of 
drunks is far lower than in the days of the saloon, 
secondly, because it results from a definite and antici- 
pated phase in the enforcement of the dry laws. 

The schemes of the rum-runner and bootlegger 
were not conceived over night. They were the re- 
sults of weeks and months of plotting and devising. 
The opening period of forbearance was inevitably 
to be followed by the growth of an illicit traffic. A 
period of reconstruction must inevitably follow the 
enactment of this legislation even as a long and not 
yet completed period of reconstruction followed the 
granting of equal rights to the black man. The illicit 
trafficker, with the encouragement of a vociferous 
minority and of many public officials has found how 
to evade the law. 



The bootlegging problem, then, is not a problem 
of prohibition, but a problem of reconstruction. 
Patronage of the bootlegger is the waning expres- 
sion of opinion by the minority who are unwilling 
to accept the will of the majority. It will decrease 
progressively as the public — and especially the East, 
for prohibition is solidly established in the South 
and Central West — become more accustomed to the 

Another point that bears directly upon the question 
of the recent increase in arrests. More drunkenness 
is not an evidence that more liquor is being drunk; 
it is simply an added proof of the poisonous char- 
acter of bootlegged whiskey. This statement is 
based on positive evidence produced during my ex- 
perience as Chief Enforcement Agent. 

The man who once got drunk on three drinks, can 
now get ^runk on one. Some of the whiskey I have 
seized would make the Statue of Liberty tipsy. 

Expert gagers of the Revenue Department who 
carefully tested and analyzed various brands of gin 
and whiskey seized during the late months of 1921 
were amazed that the human stomach could hold 
such stuff even for the space of five minutes. 

Bootlegged whiskey comes from two main sources, 
illegal distilling and smuggling.; The whiskey dis- 
tilled in the slum, on the farms and in the remote 
place of New England is made one day and sold 
the next, whereas whiskey, for even legitimate use, 
is unfit to drink unless it has been aged. The dollar- 
chasing traffic of the rum-maker is too profitable for 
him to age his product. It is sold to the unsuspect- 
ing drinker with all of the wood alcohol, fusel oil 
and other poisonous ingredients that poisen the sys- 
tem and deaden the vitals. Liqour smuggled across 
the border from Canada is almost equally new and 



dangerous. The so called "White Horse" whiskey- 
seized in the Quincy House raid was of such a char- 
acter that it could not fail to result in a drunken 
carousal. I have been told by persons who were 
present prior to my arrival — and who were invited 
(I was not) — that a single large drink "put under" 
some of the guests. 

The best advice that I can give to the public is 
this: every man who takes a drink of liquor which 
he did not personally buy before June 1, 1919, is do- 
ing so at the risk of his health. Every man who 
drinks indiscriminately liquor sold by the bootlegger 
is digging his own grave just as surely as if the pick 
and shovel were in his hands. 

If men could once visit some of the foul places in 
which the vile stuff is made they would quake with 
shame that it had ever touched their lips. I have 
seen stills turning out scores of gallons a day from 
out houses, slaughter houses and piggeries reeking 
with filth and the stale odors of dirt and dung. I 
have arrested guardians of stills so filthy in their 
persons that one would involuntarily shun them on 
the sidewalk; yet these man handled their product 
carelessly, doubtless drank from the open containers 
and cared nothing if the liquor came in contact with 
their persons. 

This is the sort of liquor that is being sold today 
to the habitual drinker in New England and in every 
city where the bootlegging traffiic thrives. This is 
the vile stuff for which men pay 50 cents and a dol- 
lar per swallow. And this is the product which is 
keeping the police busy dragging men from the gut- 
ters into the lower courts. 

A trafHc of this kind can have only a fleeting evist- 
ence. It will reap its harvest of broken bodies and 
souls, but wiser men and women will desert it. 

Whatever else may be argued from figures, they 
show that drunkenness has decreased in volume 
since 1917. What is true of Boston and Massachu- 



setts is equally true of other cities and states through- 
out the nation, except in sections which had pre- 
viously enjoyed State-wide prohibition. A survey of 
the forty-eight States completed by the New York 
World after two years of prohibition indicated a 
greatly reduced number of drunkenness arrests 
throughout the nation. In many cases the totals 
have been reduced two-third from the year 1916. 
Chicago, one of the outstanding exceptions, is the 
most notorious crime city in the country under its 
present administration and there has been no genuine 
attempt at enforcement there. 

Greater New York, with its nearly 10,000,000 resi- 
dents, has been the most noteworthy battle-ground 
of the "wets" and *'drys". In that great metropolitan 
area, covering Newaik, Jersey City and Hoboken as 
well as New York City, drunk arrests have been re- 
duced more than one-half. 

The third definite achievement of prohibition is a 
social one. It is to be noted in improved conditions 
in the homes of the poor which are unanimously re- 
ported by social workers and others having to do 
with the administration of charities. The phonograph 
has replaced the empty bottle; ordinary home com- 
forts have found their way into families which be- 
fore had known only want and privation. 

Herbert C. Parsons, Deputy Probation Commis- 
sioner of Massachusetts furnishes one of the most 
convincing testimonials on the results of prohibition : 

"The reports of our probation officers who visit 
in the home are distinctly favorable as to the better 
conditions of the homes. Their opinions as to the 
benefits of prohibition are nearly unanimous. 

"We think that this altered condition is directly 
reflected in the recent decline in juvenile delinquency, 
which has been most marked. The juvenile probation 
officers attribute it to the same cause. While our 
figures include only the cases placed on probation, 
these may be taken as a gage of all juvenile cases. 



During 1921 in Massachusetts fewer children under 
twelve years of age were placed on probation than 
in any previous year. This is a remarkable fact 
because of recent years the number had been increas- 
ing due to the large uses of the juvenile court." 

Regarding the drunkenness cases, which have al- 
ready been alluded to, Mr. Parsons stated: 

"The recent increase in the volume of drunkenness 
may be ascribed to any or all of several causes. The 
character of the liquor is such that the drunken man 
now taken to the station house goes very fast after 
his first one or two drinks and is a pitiable figure. 
The moderate drinker who occasionally stepped over 
the line and became tipsy on the streets has practi- 
cally disappeared. I am inclined to think that so 
far as Boston is concerned, at least, the police are 
now more thorough-going and alert." 

The decline in juvenile delinquency in Massachu- 
setts is shown by the following figures: 

\ Male Female Totals 

1915 - 3,202 154 3,356 

1916 3,441 187 3,628 

1917 4,322 215 4,537 

1918 5,008 258 5,266 

1919 4,989 292 5,281 

1920 3,989 285 4,274 

1921 4,127 294 4,421 

The decline in the total probation cases throughout 
the State is shown by the following official figures : 

1915 27,994 

1916 28,953 

1917 - 30,588 

1918 - 24,017 ■ 

1919 -. 24,537 

1920 18,209 

1921 23,845 

From these facts one may venture far afield into 
the realm of speculation. Consider records of in- 
creasing bank deposits. In 1916 total deposits in 



National banks in this country were $10,877,087,000; 
in 1921 $15,142,331,000, or nearly 40 per cent greater. 
According to records^ of the United States Treasury 
Department deposits in State banks of all classes 
were, for 1916, $23,499,471,000; for 1921, $23,516,- 
468,000, or approximately the same despite a year 
of acknowledged depression and unemployment. 

Figures of this sort may be exposed to the con- 
tention that other causes may have contribute! to the 
condition. But if so, the same reply may be made to 
one of the most insidious attacks against prohibition, 
namely, hat it is responsible for the crime wave of 
1921. What part prohibition may have played in 
contributing to a wave of criminal activity and gen- 
eral disregard of law is a matter of conjecture. 
Crime waves have always followed in the wake of the 
lowering of moral standards that attends a great war 
and, it may well be argued, are the natural accom- 
paniment of an era of great world disorder and mal- 

Chargers of this kind are the weapon of the wet 
propagandist, the ever-watchful enemy of prohibition 
and of all that waits on human progress. The 
propagandist is working twenty-four hours a day. 
He is a vulture perched upon a precipice, who poun- 
ces upon every element of wrong and discontent to 
tear it to pieces before the public gaze. But the odor 
of the carcass is the odor which the vulture gives to 
it. His arguments are specious. Prohibition is 
costly,* he says; therefore no amount of good can 
make it right; prohibition makes crime though no 
one can prove it ; prohibition brings corrupt influen- 
ces to bear on public officials ; therefore it is impos- 
sible of enforcement. The foe of prohibition aims 
to dissatisfy the public with it. There is only one 
way to combat this implacable foe and that is with 
the truth. 

The Eighteen Amendment is a part of the Federal 
Constitution. It was written into the Constituion 



by the orderly processes of Government, tedious but 
immutable, and approved by the Legislatures of 45 
of the States. It can only be erased by two-thirds 
of the States reversing the action of the whole. This 
is clearly impossible when more than one-third — 19 
States to be exact — have accepted State-wide prohi- 
bition by popular vote. 

The opposition to prohibition is central in the East 
and North. Defiance to the law is a step toward 
secession, even as was the hostility of the South half 
a century ago, to a step of progress which it disap- 
proved. It is a threat against the Union, which no 
law-abiding citizen will tolerate, much less nourish. 
For generations the industrial East has dictated the 
commercial policies of the nation. It is time now 
for the citizens of the East to realize that f ey can 
not dictate the social fortunes of a nation. The con- 
tention that prohibition is a minority law is false. 
The record of 19 States, which have accepted prohi- 
bition by popular vote and 16 others which had State- 
wide legislative prohibition before national prohibi- 
tion prove that it is false. 

The success of prohibition will be promoted In di- 
rect ratio to the education of the public on t^ e sub- 
ject. Citizens who know the facts should preach 
them and uphold the Constitution of the United 

It is an out and out fight for Law Enforcement 
not prohibition, the sacredness of our Constitution 
must be defended not on Sundays and Wednesdays 
but on seven days a week, fifty-two weeks a year. 
Light Wine and Beer 

Letting down the bars, or to be more specific, 
opening the bars to the sale of light wine and beer 
would be the opening wedge in the nullification of 
the Prohibitory Law. I know from personal experi- 
ence the difficulties of suppressing the liquor nuisance 
under the present conditions, without making the 
proposition nearly hopeless by permitting the sale of 



beer. Every former saloon in the country would 
open, and could exist on the sale of beer. With 
these '*hell-holes" running wide open, it would be 
next to impossible to prevent the surreptitious sale 
of hard liquors over the bar, or by the walking bar 
rooms, commonly known as hip bootleggers. Eighty 
five percent of the liquor sold during the license 
years was beer. 

The following extract from a pamphlet published 
by the Massachusetts Anti-Saloon League clearly de- 
picts Massachusetts' own experiences in permitting 
the sale of beer: 

Entirely aside from the constitutional difficulties 
and from a consideration of the health and welfare 
of the people the sale of a so-called light beer should 
be prohibited. 

It is universally recognized that it is impossible 
to enforce prohibition and at the same time permit 
the continuance of the organized liquor trade. Eva- 
sions and violations are certain to occur. In other 
words it is impossible to have a chemist with every 

In 1869 the Legislature of Massachusetts passed a 
law (Acts of 1869, Ch. 415) which prohibited the sale 
of all spirituous liquors, and defined intoxicating 
liquors as covering spirituous liquors and also beer, 
ale, porter and wine. The following year the law 
was amended by striking out the clause which cov- 
ered ale, beer, porter and wine. (Acts of 1870, Ch. 
389) Spirituous liquors were prohibited except for 
medicinal, mechanical, and i-dustrial purposes, and 
the sale of beer, porter, ale, and wine was allowed 
without restriction throughout the entire Common- 
wealth. In other words the conditions then were 
as nearly identical with those under a 2f per cent 
or 4 per cent regime as one might well expect they 
could be. And yet it is a matter of common knowl- 
edge that with the resumption of the sale of beer 
the cost of maintaining corrective institutions almost 



immediately jumped 14 per cent. An exhaustive 
analysis by the Boston HerrJd shows that arrests for 
drunkenness increased 72 per cent immediately after 
1869 and this increase was identical in point of time 
with exemption of beer from prohibition. 

Every day knowledge, the experience of Massa- 
chusetts, and that of other states caused Congress to 
reject by overwhelming majorities numerous amend- 
ments proposing to exempt beer from the prohibition 
of the Eighteen Amendment to the Constitution. 

It should, also, be noted that, while six states out 
of the 48 do not define intoxicating liquors, 18 de- 
fine as intoxicating any liquor containing any alco- 
hol, making a total of 35 out of 42 which define in- 
toxicating liquors, that recognize the validity and 
necessity of at least a i of 1 per cent standard. 

Common experience, the deliberations of legisla- 
tive bodies, and the decisions of the highest judicial 
tribunals join in compelling the conclusion that to 
permit the sale of beer "would faciliate subterfuges 
and frauds and fetter the enforcement of the law;*' 
that to prohibit the sale of beer "is an essential of 
either effective enforcement or effective prohibition 
of intoxicating liquors." 



Chapter VI. 

Publicity, it made me, it kept me on the job several 
months after I was billed for the discard and at the 
end to a certain extent was my undoing. 

If there was any one thing that stood out in my 
enforcement work that is to be of lasting benefit to 
the cause of prohibition it is the publicity that was 
given to my activities. Public attention was focused 
upon law enforcement from the Top Down rather 
than from the Bottom Part Way Up in such a way 
that those who are perniciously scheming to under- 
mine the constitutional law of the land had better 
watch their step. 

The better class of citizens in this country will not 
tolerate a law administered with differing degrees of 
elasticity for different classes of people. If there 
is to be any immunity or humanizing of penalties 
it ought to be in inverse ratio to the wealth and in- 
tellectuality of the culprit. The man who has been 
entrusted with the enforcement of any law or has 
been elected to some high office and winks at, or openly 
violates the law he is sworn to uphold, is a greater 
menace to law and order than the ordinary thief or 
bootlegger. It is the highbrow constitution dodger 
who deserves the most drastic treatment. 

Graft and hypocrisy in high places cannot thrive 
on publicity. Fresh air and sunlight are the best 
preventitives for filth and disease. The same is true 
with corruption. It cannot stand the persistent piti- 
less publicity that ex-mayor John F. Fitzgerald of 
Boston has had so much to say about in the past 
but unfortunately has been unable to put into uni- 
versal practice. 

A Federal or State office holder, whether he be 
elective or appointive, is a public servant. The 
people pay the bills and have a right to expect ser- 
vice. The only means at the disposal of the public 



for finding out what is going on behind the scenes 
in Federal of State offices is pubUcity. When the 
public awakens to the need of demanding more news, 
rather than less, regarding its officials, there will be 
less graft and less hypocrisy. 

I considered my office as Chief Prohibition En- 
forcement Officer in Massachusetts a public trust 
and invited the freest inspection by the public, or- 
ganization committees, newspaper reporters, or who 
ever might be in any way interested and if it is ever 
my fortune to hold another public trust I will again 
take the people into my confidence. 

No presidental candidate was ever more persistent- 
ly in the lime light than I was during my 7i months 
experience in the Massachusetts prohibition depart- 
ment. I have been quoted as saying so many things 
that I never said nor even dreamed of that during 
the later days of my tenure of the office of Chief 
Prohibition Enforcement Officer, I had to pinch my- 
self occasionally to make sure I was the same Harold 
D. Wilson so freely quoted in the press. 

Daniel Webster was supposed to have had a won- 
derful command of the English language. His 
vocabulary was immense, but he had nothing on me 
if I actually said all I was reported to have said, 
in as many different ways, employing such varying 
phrases and such a multiplicity of words. 

The principle argument of some people against 
my enforcement was my alleged volubility. I was 
condemned for too much publicity, irrespective of 
whether or not I was actually to blame. I was even 
told that my so called superior, Potter, should have 
received the publicity and not Wilson as if I was 
in a position to dictate to the newspapers what raids 
they would cover and what names they would use. A 
man sitting in a swivel chair smoking a T. D. is not 
news. A man jumping over the top of a bar is 
quite apt to make news whether he wills it or not. 

If a dog bites a man it is not news, but if a man 


bites a dog it is front page copy. When I raided a 
poor Italian in the North End there was little news 
to it, but when I captured the entire police depart- 
ment of Wrentham drinking in the town fire station 
it was news of the first order, and it was Wilson 
news, not Potter news. No amount of humility on 
my part could have substituted the name of Potter 
for Wilson. 

As Prohibition Chief, I had no better friends than 
the newspaper reporters, who followed me about day 
after day. Sometimes a paper took a wholesome 
slam at Wilson but as a rule I was used very fairly. 
Occasionally a cub or hostile reporter would attribute 
verbiage to me that I never emitted but such effus- 
sions are to be expected in publicity. No man can 
reap the benefits and not get the backfire when he is 
continually receiving press notices. 

I am quite willing to bear the condemnation of 
some conservatives, who would have no publicity 
except their own variety, firm in the conviction that 
public attention has been focussed upon the fact that 
there is a law enforcement department and that un- 
der my regime an honest wholehearted attempt was 
made to have it function. The public is so thor- 
oughly aroused that no let up will be permitted. 

The following editorial appearing in the North 
Adams Transcript on January 28, 1922, is very much 
to the point relative to the valu2 of the publicity re- 
ceived by the prohibition department during my 
tenure of office:-^ 


A few days ago, when it was reported that, as a 
means of terminating the impossible situation growing 
out of the Wilson-Potter feud, Wilson was to be "let 
out through the top," we said that while the federal 
authorities may have hit upon the best solution, they 
made the wrong choice for a very definite reason. 

And that reason grows out of the very reason as- 
signed by Commissioner Haynes for the peremptory dis- 
missal of Wilson from the prohibition enforcement ser- 
vice, following his refusal to accept the "promotion" 



that was offered him; namely, his temperament. 

For it is nothing more nor less than Wilson's tem- 
perament that has made prohibition enforcement an ex- 
ceedingly live topic of public interest and discussion 
throughout Massachusetts today; that has, in fact, very 
effectively lifted that subject out of the serene depths 
of complacent tolerance and amused skepticism. 

It may be, as Mr. Potter charges, that he has done 
this to get himself talked about. We don't know as to 

What we do know is that he has gotten prohibition 
enforcement talked about. 

And he has gotten it talked about by doing the very 
things that complaceny and skepticism had confidently 
assumed couldn't or wouldn't be done. 

The result has been a severe jolt for complacency; a 
new and questioning note among the skeptical from one 
end of the state to the other ; an uneasy feeling of won- 
der as to how far this sort of thing might be carried and 
where it would strike next in some quarters; a quick- 
ened interest as to it possibilities in others. 

And that result was, we maintain, of far greater im- 
portance under existing circumstances than any so- 
called "practical" results as recorded in the mere statis- 
tics of confiscations and convictions growing out of Mr. 
Wilson's personal activities. 

It was a result that could be nullified in only one 
way; namely, by confirmation of the cynical (and none 
too confident) prediction that Wilson was due for the 

Because the action taken by Commissioners Haynes 
and Blair in this case rightly or wrongly will be con- 
strued as nothing more nor less than such a confirma- 
tion, we regard their decision as a grave mistake. 

'Commissioner Haynes says that no question of Wil- 
son's "honesty, energy or interest" is involved in the 

Conceding the same to be true of Mr. Potter, it w-- 
merely a matter of judgment as to which should be 
retained in the interests of the work to be done in 

For the reasons here set forth, and for no other rea- 
sons, fully recognizing that a choice had to be made, we 
believe that good judgment dictated a choice contrary 
to the one that was made. 

Since the opposite course was taken, the vindication 
of the commissioners' judgment rests with Mir. Potter 
as head of the departmnet in this state. 

He says that the enei^ies of the department will be 



devoted to enforcing the law and not to seeking personal 

Well and good, so far as "personal" publicity goes. 

But if he means that henceforth there need be no 
apprehension in Massachusetts of the kind of unpleas- 
ant publicity that is inseparable from a vigorous and 
impartial prosecution of the law, he will not justify the 
judgment of his superiors in the public estimation. 

Eliminating all personal considerations, Wilson has 
set a popular standard that Potter must live up to. 

And the public is not going to judge the result on the 
basis of statistics. 

It is going to judge by the test of who the law hits, 
who it fails to hit, and why. 

Publicity is an art. That is, the publicity that 
gets beneficial results and nothing else. Some peo- 
ple apparently believe it is a haphazard hit or miss 
proposition, and, unfortunately, many of our dry or- 
ganizations and churches conduct their advertising 
in that manner. Such is not the case, however, with 
the wet interests. They are not only persistent in 
their publicity but shrewd and systematic. Some of 
the most injurious propaganda against prohibition 
enforcement is disseminated by ardent church mem- 
bers after the false seed has been slyly sown by the 
wet propagandist. 

I know two newspaper reporters who are said to 
be regularly receiving pay from certain wet politi- 
cians. This statement is not a mere assertion as I 
can back it up with concrete proof. One of these 
men spends most of his time in Washington and the 
other is a well-known Boston reporter. Both have 
attacked Wilson at every opportunity, and I have 
aways considered their abuse as wholly complimen- 
tary. The wets never waste their ammunition on 
harmless or passive drys. 

Big business spends thousands of dollars yearly 
for advertising experts to protect its public good 
will, and gubernatorial candidates if wise immediate- 
ly secure publicity agents to supervise their newspa- 
per campaign. Without such an agent the average 
candidate would hang himself in a week. 



I was in the calcium light of continued publicity 
for several months. The glare was much stronger 
than turned upon the average candidate for high 
office, yet, I had to go it single handed except for 
the advice of friendly reporters. I cannot say too 
much at this point for these go through lads. Many 
of them went over the top with me in bar rooms, in 
kitchen dives, and in elaborate West End distilleries 
with as much speed and as much enthusiasm as my 
best agents. They not only covered, but entered in- 
to the spirit of raids in all kinds of weather and un- 
der many really trying and dangerous conditions. 

I could name from six to ten Boston reporters in 
whom I have the most explicit faith as to their re- 
portorial judgment and accuracy. Men who have 
kept my feet on the ground on many occasions when 
the slightest betrayal of confidence on their part 
would have been not only extremely embarrassing 
but very injurious. 

These news sleuths work with, not against the 
men they are covering and their friendship is in- 
valuabe to any man in public life. 

On the other hand, a strange newspaperman may 
occasionally wander into the fold and then look out 
for breakers ahead. He has to be received cordially, 
for it is foolhardy to try to cover up but no one 
knows just what to expect. He may be out to get 
you or he may be simply lacking in newspaper acu- 
men, but you are out of luck in either event. An 
unfriendly reporter can do more damage in a three 
word interview than can be rectified in a week of 
legitimate publicity. 

The publicity artist or notoriety seeker, in public 
life soon loses the confidence of the press and thus 
defeats his own ends, while the shrinking gumshoe 
politician who finds the pitiless glare of publilcity 
a handicap is often played up on the front pages. 
The man who would cover up cannot, and the man 


who would talk for publicity can get no paper to pub- 
lish his story. 

No man can get into the newspaper headlines un- 
less he makes news, and it he does make news he gets 
in whether he wills it or not. Ponzi, Pelletier and 
Fatty Arbuckle can hardly be termed voluntary no- 
toriety seekers, yet column after column has been 
published about them. 

I suppose Theodore Roosevelt was the greatest 
publicity artist the world has ever known. He could 
make a speech and raise his hand to silence the ap- 
plause, and actually be leading the cheering. He 
was pictured as the incarnation of personal conceit 
by some short sighted politicians who now, that he 
is dead, proclaim him as the great American. It 
will be many a long day before his equal is found as 
a leader in lifting the American public opinion out 
of the doldrums of petty, personal selfishness. 

Roosevelt got publicity because he was energtic and 
belligerant in his actions. His statements were 
breezy and emphatic. He was always definitely on 
one side of a question or the other. He was never 
neutral, therefore he was always news. 

I have heard the Hon. J. Weston Allen, Attorney 
General of Massachusetts, called a publicity artist. 
Why ? Simply because he is continually in the news- 
paper head lines. 

Does Mr. Allen seek the newspapers for inter- 
views or do the reporters trail him? 

The Attorney General gets publicity because he 
does things not in the usual conventional, soft-pedal 
way of bellowing at the little fellows and overlooking 
the big ones, but in the unusual, unorthodox, un- 
expected, unheard of (in polite society) manner of 
a Roosevelt. 

He is fighting the people's fight and the public 
knows it. The newspapers are purveyors of public 
opinion. The editors are in intimate and constant 
touch with the pulse of the people. They know 



what is wanted in the way of news and as a result, 
Attorney General Allen keeps on the front page. 

The peanut headed politicians, and unfortunately 
we have many of the variety, scream from the roof 
tops "Allen is a notoriety seeker." He is too volu- 
ble; he is in constant pursuit of personal aggrandise- 
ment; he is ambitious for the governorship. 

If the pea heads had sufficient gray matter to put 
two and two together, they would realize the Attor- 
ney General was taking his job seriously, and in so 
doing was doing the unusual, the extraordinary. As 
a consequence his every move, his most casual utter- 
ance, is news. 

To be sure, Mr. Allen is continually boosting him- 
self for every time he does anything worth while, 
he adds just so much to his prestige. Today he is 
undoubtedly the strongest gubernatorial possibility 
in the State, not because he has been aiming at that 
particular position, but because he has been true, 
aggressive, and unswerving in his public trust. He 
found a man-sized job and is trying to fill it. 

The two-cent politi'-ians, as Congressman Under- 
bill was wont to call his colleagues in the Massachu- 
setts Legislature prior to his promotion to Washing- 
ton, are too much concerned with their own petty 
personal affairs, and too little interested in the safe 
keeping of the public weal to see anything but the 
personal aggrandisement of a Roosevelt, or an Allen 
or any other unafraid, unfettered public official who 
does things off the ordinary. Jealousy is their first 
pang, when they see another getting publicity which 
they crave, themselves, (but lack the moral courage 
and initiative to obtain), they scream notoriety seeker. 

It is barely possible that Wilson, the notoriety 
seeker, as some will have it, was more or less a vic- 
tim of circumstances. Perhaps his idea of enforcing 
the prohibitory law from the Top Down rather than 
from the Bottom Part Way Up was so unusual, 
so unique, that he automotically became news. Pos- 



sibly the newspaper reporters trailed him not Wilson 
the reporters. 

I might deny at length certain statements attri- 
buted to me, but such a denial would answer no use- 
ful purpose. The best policy in publicity, unless 
favored with an advertising expert as an advisor, is 
one of humility and thankfulness that misstatements 
are no worse. 

I have only the kindliest feeling for the press of 
Massachusetts, and feel that the publicity I received, 
whatever its effect on Wilson, has been of inesti- 
miable value to prohibition law enforcement. 

Wilson *'Statue" Inscription Contest 

One of the most hopeful signs relative to prohi- 
bition law enforcement is the universal interest in 
the subject. It is discussed on the street corner, in 
the railroad car, and everywhere people congregate. 
The discussions, to be sure are often grossly exag- 
gerated upofi one side or the other, but that is of lit- 
tle consequence in comparison with the importance 
of keeping the topic alive. If the people continually 
talk about anything, sooner or later, the truth will 
come into its own. 

There is no better illustration of the universal in- 
terest in law enforce than the "Wilson 'Statue' In- 
scription Contest" conducted by the Boston Traveler 
during the latter part of January and the first of 
February, 1922. It is reported that thousands of 
inscriptions were received. 

The four prize winning inscriptions and some 
twenty others which received honorable mention are 
published : 

The Winners 

First prize, Morris B. Parkinson, 73 Collidge 
Street, Brookline. "He refused to be clay in the 
hands of the Totter.' " ' 

Second prize, Miss Alice M. Wing, 3 Wallingford 



Road, Brighton. 'Tilgrim pause and note this fact , 
Wilson Mied' for the Volstead Act." 

Third prize, Stuart Tod, 497 Boylston Street, 
Brookline. "A man of understanding holdeth his 

Fourth prize, Edward Reynolds, 152 North Beacon 
Street, Brighton. "Wilson will be remembered long- 
er as a beverage than as a reformer." 

Win Honorable Mention 

Deposed, like the Kaiser, he reposes *in Dutch' " — 
By Anna L. Stearns, 55 Magazine Street, Cambridge, 
suite 1. 

"Win or lose, he seized the booze, he's gone but 
not forgotten" — By G. A. Freeman, 471 Maple Street, 
Manchester, N. H. 

"The spirit of 1922"— By Edward A. Filene, Bos-: 
ton, Mass. 

"Be not too zealous, lest the zeal consume thee" — 
By H. Kelleher, 7 Bowdoin Street, Medford, Mass. 

"Destroy the booze or destroy the law" — By W. 
P. Fitzgerald, 1515 Blue Hill Ave., Mattapan, Mass. 

"The Carrie Nation of 1922"— By Marguerite 
Hatch, North Cohsaset, Mass. 

"Untiring worker, brave and bold, but lacking 
knowledge, his tongue to hold" — By Mabel Webb 
Edmands, 78 Forest Street, Wellesley Hills, Mass. 

"To dangerous a hitter, so they passed him" — By 
Mrs. Edward J. Spellman, 45 Payson Road, Belmont, 

"Removed — for conduct unbecoming an enforce- 
ment officer" — By Joseph French, Box 161, Chelms- 
ford, Mass. 

"Oh, Prohibition, what follies are committed in 
thy name!"— By Percy N. Lane, 335 Water Street, 
Quincy, Mass. 

'Search,' and the world is with you. 'Find' and 
you're all alone." — By E. Vernon Peabody, Pleasant 
Street, Rowley^ Mass. 



"Dislodged''— By Gordon C. Douglas, 18 Fuller 
Street, Brookline, Mass. 

"The spirits beckoned, he followed blindly" — By 
Elizabeth M. Bradford, Parker House, Boston, Mass. 

"There never was a battle but some one was 
killed"— By Mrs. J. H. Horan, 20 High Street, May- 
nard, Mass. 

'^Kicked by a White Horse' ''—By Mrs. Anna M. 
Lambert, 39 Pine Street, Belmont, Mass. 

"He Spilled It"— By C. A. Merrill, 40 Meagher 
Avenue, Milton, Mass. 

"Sufficient unto the act is the enforcement there- 
of—By John J. Doyle, 389 Cambridge Street, Alls- 
ton 34, Mass. 

"Fired for faithfulness"— By the Rev. A. Z. Con- 
rad, Park Street Church, Boston, Mass. 

"Catching bootleggers is all right, but at a politi- 
cials' party — wow — good-night!" — By Davis Reid, 
Jordan Avenue Wakefield. 

"Never still while a still distilled till the distilling 
still was still.' — By Davis Reid, Jordan Avenue, 




Chapter VII. 

It is possible to raid near-bear saloons l^ally in 
but two ways. The more common practice is to 
obtain a purchase of liquor, go before the United 
States Commissioner, secure a search warrant for 
the premises of the near-beer saloon, or "hell- 
kitchen" or whatever the name of the place making 
the sale may be, and then search for illegal liquor. 
If anything is found stronger than i of 1% the 
proprietor or bartender in charge or both are arrest- 
ed for appearance before a United States Commis- 
sioner the next day. 

The other method, and generally the more excic- 
ing, is to secure a buy of liquor while another agent 
is close enough to see the transaction. The minute 
the buy is consumated, the agent making the pur- 
chase announces himself as a federal prohibition 
agent. The other agent jumps the bar and arrests 
the man making the sale. If this man does not 
happen to be the proprietor and the proprietor is 
present, he is also arrested. This little knocking- 
off stunt generally precipitates a near-riot. Quick 
and sometimes drastic action is necessary on the 
part of agents in order to prevent any serious dis- 
orders. Pistols were never drawn unless absolutely 
necessary, but many, many times, it was wise to al- 
low the hangers-on to notice your pistol protruding 
from your pocket, or in some other equally accessible 

The proprietors or bar-tenders seldom made 
trouble, although in some instances, some rather 
strenuous set-to's were staged with these gentlemen. 
The hangers-on made most of the trouble and there 
never was any telling what some half-drunk man 
might do or throw. 



I shall never forget the very first bar room I 
raided or ''knocked off". I had been on the job 
about a week and was itching for action. I was 
passing through Worcester by auto in company with 
one of my agents and a green chauffeur — green, I 
mean, in the parlance of liquor raiding. 

The agent entered a rather notorious near-beer 
emporium for the purpose of making a "buy". 1 
carelessly sauntered into the doorway of a store just 
across the street where I could see the interior of 
the saloon. The agent hung around the bar for 
some ten or fifteen minutes, drinking, much to his 
disgust, a couple of near-beers, before he was able 
to win the confidence of the bartender sufficiently to 
secure a buy of "shine". The minute he had made his 
purchase and the money had been rung up in the 
cash register he clamped his hand over the top 
of his glass of liquor, backed away from the hangers- 
on in front of the bar and announced himself as a 
federal prohibition agent. 

While he was doing this, I rushed from my obser- 
vation post to his rescue. The chauffeur, who was 
a game lad, even if green at the game, followed me 
into the bar room. Several men had jumped upon 
my agent in an endeavor to make him spill the evi- 
dence. With the assistance of the chauffeur, the 
hangers-on were soon convinced, a part of our argu- 
ment being driven home with our fists, that it was 
safer to stand back. 

Arming the chauffeur with a threatening-looking 
pistol, backing him into a corner, and handing him 
the evidence he was told to guard it at any cost. 

The first duty of a prohibition agent is to protect 
his evidence, regardless of what may happen to him. 
It is quite easy to understand that a man trying to 
prevent the spilling of a glass of liquor in his hand 
is at a decided disadvantage in any rought-and- 
tumble fight. During my term as Chief Enforce- 
ment Officer in Massachusetts, some of my agents 



absorbed considerable punishment on numerous occa- 
sions rather than lose their evidence. 

The agent with me then jumped the bar. I was 
new at the game this being my first offense and did 
not consider such action necessary. I soon learned 
however, my mistake. As the agent went over the 
top, the two men behind the bar made a dive to 
dump the bottle containing liquor. The agent 
grappled with one man but the other grabbed the 
bottle and started pouring it down the sink. I then 
discovered that I was on the wrong side of the bar. 
The best that I could do under the circumstances was 
to reach over the t^ p and grab the man spilling the 
liquor by the nap of the neck and jam his face down 
into the top of the bar. I used the old football tact- 
ics of rubbing his nose into the bar. He soon layed 
off in his endeavor to spill the evidence. In. the 
meanwhile a hanger-on had seized a couple of bottles 
and was preparing to beat a tattoo on my head. As 
luck would have it, my agent had floored his man 
by this time and rather unceremoniously shoved his 
pistol into the pit of the stomach of the man who 
would have brained me. This had a very soothing 
affect upon the entire fracas. 

This set-to proved a good lesson for me. I 
learned that speed and being in the right place at the 
right time were absolutely imperative to successful 

A tremendous crowd had collected outside the bar 
by the time open hostilities had ceased within and it 
was only by keeping the doors locked and a pistol 
plainly visible that no attempt was made to rescue 
the prisoners. After what seemed an hour to me, 
which, as a matter of fact, was less than fifteen min- 
utes, the police responded to our call for help. The 
prisoners were bundled into the patrol wagon and 
booked at the police station for appearance before 
the United States Commissioner the next morning. 
I have been in other raids on many occasions which 



proved infinitely more exciting than this one, but as 
I have already stated, this is the one that I remem- 
ber most vividly. 

An experience in a New Bedford bar room was 
quite exciting and more or less amusing. On this 
occasion I was working with the local police under 
Chief Dougherty, and, by the way, it is a pleasure 
to state that I always found the Chief in New Bed- 
ford very, willing to cooperate in any way. In my 
estimation, he was one of the best in the state, al- 
though New Bedford can hardly be called one of the 
Commonwealth's dryest cities. The chief, like many 
other similar officials, has been handicapped by poli- 
tical conditions in the city over which he had no 
control. These conditions can be rectified anytime 
the citizens of New Bedford awaken to their re- 
sponsibility and potential power. I have had no ex- 
perience with Mayor Remington recently elected, but 
judging froni my knowledge of his efficiency as a 
City Clerk I should expect a genuine impartial law 
enforcement under his administration. 

It has always been my contention that the police 
department does not lead in the creation of public 
opinion but is dependent upon public backing. If 
the mayor or legislative branch of a city is wet or 
luke warm in law enforcement the chief is greatly 
handicapped. Apathy among high officials means 
general letting down in all law enforcement. 

On the occasion of the New Bedford raid men- 
tioned above, two of my agents had been working in 
New Bedford for some two or three days unknown 
to the local police, and some thirteen search war- 
rants had been secured. I gathered togther a force 
of thirteen agents and started for New Bedford at 
about three o'clock in the afternoon. When within 
a half hour's journey from New Bedford I called 
Chief Dougherty on the phone and told him that I 
would be in town inside of thirty minutes, and 
would need some fifteen or twenty live-wire police- 



men. When my automobile pulled into the police 
station in New Bedford the Chief with characteris- 
tic vigor had mustered his men and was ready for 
instant action. One agent was assigned to each raid 
with one or more policemen. Watches were com- 
pared and I issued orders that the thirteen places 
should be hit at exactly 6.30 P. M. This procedure 
is always necessary when more than one raid is to 
be staged, as the telephone bells start jingling 
throughout a city or town the minute it is known 
that Prohibition agents are raiding. One of the 
search warrants was found to be defective in that 
the address and premises were not properly de- 
scribed, so I took this bar room myself. The only 
way in which to make an arrest in this case was to 
make a purchase and "knock oflE" the place imme- 
diately afterwards. I sent one of my agents into 
the bar who had proven a good buyer, that is he had 
the personality and persistence necessary to convince 
the proprietor or bar tender that he was a legitimate 
customer. As this man entered the bar, I watched 
the interior from a place of vantage outside where 
I could clearly see what was going on inside but 
unseen to those in charge within. Two policemen 
were in my party, but they were left in an automobile 
some fifty yards from the bar room in order to guard 
against detection. Some twenty or more hangers- 
on were congregated inside. My agent succeeded 
without great difficulty in getting a shot (which is 
the term generally used in bar rooms) of moonshine. 
The minute he had made his purchase, I entered and 
jumped over the top stating that I was a Federal Pro- 
hibition agent. The proprietor and bar tender were 
immediately placed under arrest. The hangers-on 
started a drive for my agent in order to spill the 
evidence. Covering his glass of whiskey with one 
hand he drew his revolver with the other and backed 
into a corner near the lower end of the bar. The 
gathering around the agent looked so threatening 




that I left my prisoners and went to his assistance. 
When the hangers-on had been ejected, some of 
them with a reasonable use of force, as they were 
too far gone to navigate very steadily or very rapid- 
ly, I looked for my prisoners. The proprietor was 
nowhere to be seen, the bar tender, however, was 
still standing at his post behind the bar. He appar- 
ently was somewhat dazed at the rapidity with which 
things had been happening. As soon as the evidence 
had been poured into a bottle for safe keeping and 
placed in my pocket, I sent the agent to locate the 
police, who were still apparen'^ly slumbering at thevi 
post entirely unaware of the excitement that had 
been going on in the bar room. When he notified 
them that the buy had been made, the place raided, 
the bums ejected, and the bar tender placed under ar- 
rest, they were as much surprised as the bar tender 
had been at the rather unusual proceedings. 

According to a ruling of some federal courts, no 
search can be made on a knock-off other than to 
obtain the retainer from which the drink was poured. 

I told the bar tender, however, that his place 
would be ransacked from top to bottom, floors torn 
up, etc., if he did not locate the proprietor in short 
order. Without waiting for the call from the bar 
tender, the proprietor suddenly appeared from his 
place of concealment in a cache in the wall. Appar- 
ently he thought it wiser to be arrested than to have 
his place searched so forcibly. The moonshine that 
my agent had purchased had been poured from a 
pint battle, which was about half full. No sign of 
this bottle could be found on the first preliminary 
search, but it was finally located in a paper box 
carelessly thrown into a pile of rubbish under the 
bar. It is needless to state that the officers used on 
this particular raid were not listed as New Bedford's 

Raiding with search warrants is always interesting 
and sometimes extremely exciting. The usual 



method is to send an agent into the place to be raid- 
ed, to attempt to make a *'buy". This procedure is 
necessary because of the close watch for strangers. 
One stranger is not considered dangerous, but two 
or more entering the bar at the same time will always 
result in the dumping of any liquor that may be in 
the room at the time. The advance agent saunters 
up to the bar and nonchalently orders a drink. Be- 
ing a stranger, generally the only drink he can ob- 
tain is harmless near-beer, of less than -J of one per- 
cent. While the advance agent is drinking his near- 
beer, as best he can, another agent enters with a 
search warrant. Unless the alarm is sounded, the 
first waits until his pal has located at the other end 
of the bar, then both go over the top serving the 
warrant as they go and grabbing anything in sight 
that looks like liquor. Nine times out of ten the 
supply is seized on the first rush, if at all, and if it 
is not obtained at that time, the chance of securing 
any evidence for a conviction are rather doubtful. 

In many instances the whiskey is in a container 
behind the bar in close proximity to the sink. The 
water is generally left running in the sink in order to 
be ready for any emergency. All sorts of devices 
are used for the quick spilling of the evidence. In 
one case, I found the container with the liquor on a 
board about four by twelve inches. The board was 
suspended by a hinge and strings. The strings ex- 
tended along the bar and into the private office. 
The slightest jerk on the string from anywhere along 
the bar or in the private office would spill the liquor. 

If the man planted in the bar room prior to the 
service of the search warrant makes a wise guess 
as to where the liquor is carried, he goes over the 
top at the proper place for a successful seizure. If 
he guesses wrong, the chances are no liquor will be 
found. After the first dive for the liquor, the bar 
room is generally cleared of all hangers-on. The 



proprietor and bar tender are placed under arrest 
and a systematic search inaugurated. 

A typical illustration of the little details that are 
the determining factor in spelling victory or defeat, 
is a personal experience in the bar room of a Lowell 
Hotel. I was working with one agent at the time. 
I sent this man in to line up in front of the bar for 
a drink, in front of the source of supply if possible 
I had the search warrant in my own pocket. Soon 
after the agent had entered, I came in. The pro- 
prietor, who happened to be the man behind the bar 
at that time, turned his eyes almost imperceptibly 
toward a certain section of the bar. This fleeting 
glance was enough to tell me that my agent had made 
a poor guess and that he had lined up at the wrong end 
of the bar. Consequently I stepped up to the bar be- 
tween the proprietor and the point he had uncon- 
sciously given away as the source of supply. As 
the proprietof walked up in front of me, I reached 
over the bar, grabbed him by the two wrists, and 
yanked him into the counter. My agent vaulted over 
the top and made a dive for the evidence. Just as 
I had expected it was in the exact spot at which the 
proprietor had unconsciously cast his eyes on my 
entering. If I had overlooked this slight warning 
on his part, and gone to the section of the bar that 
I would ordinarily have taken, he would have been 
able to dump the liquor with his knees even if I did 
grab him by the wrists. 

As previously stated, after the first rush for evi- 
dence, every nook and corner is searched. The walls 
and floors are pounded for loose boards, the cellar 
is spaded up, piles of lumber or coal or anything else 
that might be used for covering-up purposes are 
moved. The liquor is sometimes found in the most 
extraordinary places imaginable. Secret pockets in 
the floor and the walls or in the chimneys are com- 
mon. An agent who has taken no part in the search 
is sometimes left behind in the bar room after an 



unsuccessful search to congratulate and jolly the 
proprietor. The proprietor often times feels so good 
that he starts boasting and discloses his method of 
concealment. In one case of this kind the proprietor 
called my men "a bunch of bone-headed, brainless 
hootch-hounds". My agent applauded his remarks 
so enthusiastically and pleaded so hard for a genuine 
drink that a button was pushed and presto, chango! 
the clock swung out of place and a pocket in the 
wall was exposed containing two bottles of whiskey. 
It is needless to state that this bartender had little 
to say to the judge next morning relative to the lack 
of ability on the part of my men. 

Many times the real supply is carried in the cel- 
lar, which is accessible by means of a scuttle door 
in the rear of the bar. A bum, generally called a 
"dog" is stationed in the cellar. When the man up- 
stairs needs another bottle it is passed up through a 
hole in the floor by the aforementioned "dog". If a 
raiding party suddenly descends upon the bar the 
dog downstairs either runs out the back door with 
the hootch or smashes the bottles before an agent 
can seize them. 

This is a hard game to beat and in some instances 
makes the search warrant method valueless. The 
only way to get convictions in some cases is by the 
"knock-off" method, that is, the securing of a buy 
in the presence of another agent and the immediate 
arrest of the man making the sale. 

"Dogs" or "bums" are also stationed outside the 
main door to most saloons. These "dogs" are ever 
on the look-out for prohibition agents, or other per- 
sons that may make trouble for their master within 
the bar room. 

In one well-known bar room in Boston, not many 
weeks ago, I went over the top and down the stairs 
into the cellar so quick that "the dog" on guard was 
still blinking his eyes in surprise with a supply of 
whiskey squarely ni front of him. When I kicked 



the stool from underneath him and seized the liquor, 
he was still more surprised. Of course, this un- 
faithful dog lost his job for fhis failure to be ever 
watchful. He was discharged forthwith by the 
proprietor of the near-beer emporium, and judging 
by the choice and voluminous language used by the 
proprietor, this dog was sure to lose his card in the 
watch dog's union. 

Another case which proved amusing, but might 
have been disastrous is given as indicative of the 
many dangers incurred when an agent jumps over 
the top not knowing what may be on the other side 
of the bar. In this particular case, the man behind 
the bar had opened the scuttle door just prior to my 
entry, and when I jumped over the top, he made a 
rush for the cellar. I landed squarely on his back 
as he was half way down the cellar stairs. He 
thought the end of the world had come, but was 
much more frightened than hurt. If he had not 
been in the act of going downstairs when I went 
over there is no telling what might have happened 
to me. 

Nowadays, the average bar room is equipped with 
a bell system and a private bar in the rear of the 
main bar room. Nothing but soft drinks are sold 
at the main bar. When the right "gent" enters the 
saloon, a man who is well known in the drinkers' 
fraternity, one bell is rung and he is admitted to the 
private bar, where he gets his drink and departs at 
will. When a stranger enters, a man who appears 
like a gentleman, two bells are soimded and everone 
sits tight. If a man enters who looks like an agent 
or a policeman (some policeman are of course ex- 
cepted) everything is dumped. If two men come 
along the street who look like gentlemen, the ever 
watchful dog gives the warning and if the men make 
a move to enter the bar everything is dumped. 

As a rule, the ''smash the hootch" signal is not 
given unless two or more strange men enter at one 



time. One stranger simply means "no more sales 
for the present". If he persists in remaining, he 
soon learns from some of the hangers-on that it 
would be much healthier and safer for him to va- 

One way to beat the system is to get a man plant- 
ed in the inner-bar before staging the raid. In one 
place in Taunton it was necessary to resort to a 
regular system of fraternal-order knocks, in order 
to gain admission. I do not mean by this statement 
to infer that the signals of any particular fraternal 
order were used, but that the system in vogue was 
fully as complicated. 

An illustration of beating the ;system is an 
experience in Lowell. The saloon had the usual big 
bar at which nothing but soft drinks were sold. At 
the end farthest from the main door there was a pri- 
vate room in which the select followers of Bacchus 
were wont to gather for their drinks. The door to 
this room was always locked to the general public. 
Off of this room was a smaller one known as the 
"Holy of Holies" in which the supply of whiskey 
was kept in a suitcase, ready for instant transporta- 
tion in event of a raid. The cellar stair led out of 
this room and a "dog" was always present, ready 
to make a quick exit via the cellar. 

A bell system was established at the end of tht: 
bar nearest the door. The door to the private drink- 
ing room was never opened unless the proper bell 
signal was given. Next to the main bar room there 
was a lunch counter, the proprietor was in "cahoots" 
with the saloon keeper and a side door from the 
lunch room led into the "Holy of Holies" where the 
liquor was on tap. 

Two agents were placed in the rear of the build- 
ing to nab the "dog" if he tried to run out through 
the cellar. Two men were planted in the lunchroom 
with instructions to smash into the inner room the 
minute they noticed me pass the main entrance to 



the lunchroom. I had two agents with me. One 
dived over the bar and grabbed the bell man before 
he had time to give the bell signal. The other agent 
and I put our shoulders through the two doors sep- 
arating us from the liquor in about as much time 
as it takes to relate it. The agents in the lunch 
room smashed in their door. We all landed in the 
"Holy of Holies" at about the same time. The 
"dog'* on guard was so confused at having the doors 
broken down on all sides of him at the same time 
that he forget to run or spill the evidence. One 
whole pint of whiskey was found in the suitcase. It 
took seven husky agents to capture this pint, yet 
some people persist in saying that as much liquor is 
being sold as ever. This in the face of all the pre- 
cautions taken by those illegally dealing in liquors 
to guard against raiding parties. 

Early in January, 1922, on a Saturday night, as- 
sisted by three agents and several newspapermen, 
who proved in a number of instances to be just as 
proficient, ingenious and fearless as my agents, 
thirty-three Boston bar rooms were raided, one af- 
ter the other. A pint was the most liquor obtained 
at any place, and at about half of the bar rooms 
we did not get a drop. I had no search warrants, 
and so strategy was resorted to. In some cases an agent 
was sent in to try and make a buy, while another 
member of the party was in a position to watch the 
interior of the bar room. If the **buy''' was secured, 
the place was "knocked off** immediately, and 
those conducting the resort placed under arrest. 
In some cases, when the advance agent was meeting 
with no success in securing a buy, I rushed the place 
in company with an agent or a newspaper man, and 
made an official inspection, announcing who I was. 
Of course I had no right to make a systematic 
search, and did not attempt to do so. On six occa- 
sions the inspections resulted in the bar tender dump- 
ing whatever liquor he had in his possession. In 



more than half of the raids, however, the man be- 
hind the bar made no move to spill the evidence 
which was a pretty good indication that he had noth- 
ing behind the bar. Unless the evidence was 
dumped, no attention was paid to the agent who had 
gone in in advance to make a buy. On several occa- 
sions he made some remarks to the proprietor rela- 
tive to the presence of Prohibition agents and re- 
ceived a good dressing down from either one of my 
agents or myself. We then apparently passed out 
of the picture, and the advance agent still stayed 
with the bar tender to plead for his drink. On three 
such raids he was successful in making a buy where- 
upon I returned and again annoimced myself but 
this time I invited the proprietor or bar tender, or 
both to be my guests on a little ride down to the 
police station. There were many amusing features 
to these raids. I entered one bar room, single hand- 
ed and found the lone owner of the place standing 
disconsolately behind the bar without a customer. 
I sauntered up to the bar without announcing my- 
self and inquired as to how he foimd business. His 
tale of woe was quite heartrending. Among other 
things he called himself a fool to be trying to con- 
duct an honest business while bar rooms all round 
him were selling hard liquor. He said, "I am al- 
ways out of luck. No real trade comes my way." 
I said, "Cheer up, old man, this is one time when 
you are in luck. I am Wilson, the Prohibition Chief, 
and you will be able to spend Sunday with your folks. 
while some of your brothers down the street are go- 
ing to spend their Sunday in jail." At another place 
in Charlestown, where I was working with only one 
agent, with some twenty-five or thirty hangers-on 
in the bar, the proprietor got rather obstreperous in 
his remarks, and seemed about to incite a near riot. 
He wi ited to know why I was picking on him and 
leaving others go scot free, I then informed him that 
I was Wilson and that he knew I was hitting the 




big ones as well as the little ones. He said, "That 
is right. I guess this is my hard luck night." He 
signalled for the hangers-on to leave the bar room. 
This case indicates the wholesome effect the raid 
on the Quincy House and some other large dealers 
in liquor had upon the smaller fry. No man likes 
to be detected in the act of committing a crime, and 
if he feels that he is the goat while some more power- 
ful individual is escaping there is much more likeli- 
hood of trouble than when he realizes that the law 
is being enforced impartially. 

The following Saturday night in company with 
some of the agents, and the usual collection of news- 
paper men, for it was an impossibility to shake these 
gentlemen even if I had considered it wise to do so, 
twenty-two near beer saloons were raided in Boston. 
The raids of the previous week, however, had had 
such a wholesome effect that all that was necessary 
to make a bar room custodian spill his evidence was 
to drive ijip in front of the bar and rush the place. 
Such tactics are rather innocent sport and have a 
very salutary effect on the traffic in liquor. If I had 
continued in charge of the prohibition enforcement 
in the state, it was my plan to keep the denizons of 
the bar rooms constantly guessing by a continuance 
of such raids at uncertain intervals. If the bar 
room men ever got to the point where they did not 
dump their evidence figuring the raids fakes, it 
would have been possible to switch any time to the 
search warrant method, and thus capture the goods. 
To me, raiding bar rooms is much like playing the 
great national game of baseball. When the opposi- 
tion expects a hit and run signal cross them with a 
bunt. When the proprietor thinks you are raiding 
with a search warrant and keeps his liquor confident 
that you will not dare come behind the bar, cross 
him by entering with a search warrant and taking 
everything in sight including himself down to the 
police station for safe keeping. 



Chapter VIII. 

The first and most important step in making the 
dry laws effective is the abolition of the private 
stock supposedly placed there prior to the passage 
of the Volstead Act. There is no justice in allow- 
ing a rich man to drink in his home, or his private 
club while the poor man is charged with being a 
criminal for doing the same thing. If anything, 
the prohibitory law should be enforced more strin- 
gently from the top than from the bottom. It is 
the worst kind of hypocrisy for Congressmen to 
vote for dry laws, and insist upon maintaining 
private stocks in their own cellars. It is a fair as- 
section that some of these men ''Talk for public 
consumption, and drink for private consumption." 

The first step in a bone-dry United States should 
be an amendment to the Volstead Act giving the 
rich man a reasonable time in which to sell his 
private stock to bona fide permit holders. At the 
end of this period, any private stock should be con- 
fiscated. A great deal of the unrest against the 
Prohibitory Amendment among the poorer class is 
due to the common belief that every rich man has 
a choice and unlimited private stock. The number 
of people having this private stock, in my estima- 
tion, has been greatly over-estimated, but I do not 
wonder that the habitual drinker who finds his 
source of supply shut off or the prices tremendously 
increased, complains of such rank injustice. 

The principal value of the Quincy House raid 
was the effect upon the ordinary citizen. Almost 
without exception this class was pleased at the 
raid because it demonstrated that the influential 
were subject to law enforcement. I have received 
communications, hand shakes, and words of en- 
couragement from poor Italians, Polacks, Portu- 
guese and other nationalities generally considered 
hostile to prohibition. 


Many of these people have told me that they are 
willing to get along without their liquor if the 
man higher up is subject to the same regulation. 

The second important step in genuine law en- 
forcement is adequate jail sentences. It is per- 
fectly absurd to expect respect for any law unless 
the violators are actually punished. A bootlegger, 
in my estimation, is a great deal worse than the 
ordinary thief. The thief steals your pocketbook, 
but injures you in no other way. You are quite 
able to go to work the next day and the day fol- 
lowing and earn whatever has been lost. 

The bootlegger takes a man's money in exchange 
for rotten, poisonous liquor, and in addition impairs 
the health of the purchaser, by making, him drunk 
and often disorderly. The bootlegger steals a 
man's money and by making him sick, deprives 
him of the chance to recuperate financially by 
working the following day. The man who has im- 
bibed moonshine whiskey is a menace to life and 
property, \vhile the victim of the pickpocket is 
orderly even if disconsolate. A bootlegger sells to 
a hundred, while the thief steals from one. His 
punishment should be commensurate with his 

After spending part of one day capturing and all 
of another day convicting a bootlegger he pulled 
out a roll of bills as big as a man's two fists to pay 
his paltry fine of $100, and with the utmost brazen- 
ness turned to me and said, "Wilson, I do not mind 
this $100 fine, but you have wasted a whole day 
of my time in court." This bootlegger had the ut- 
most contempt for a law that would permit him 
to make several thousand dollars and pay $100 for 
the privilege. He should have wasted six months' 
of his time in jail at hard labor and then his con- 
tempt for the constitutional law of this country 
would have been considerably less. 

Quoting from the New York Herald, "Enforce- 
ment is the poorest where there are no state laws, 



and no co-operation between local and federal au- 
thorities, conversely, enforcement is best where 
the local law enables the local police to take a hand. 
The records indicate the ratio of one case taken to 
court by the federal authorities to four by the 

This statement is absolutely true in Massachu- 
setts except that the ratio in favor of local court 
cases is greater. Without an adequate state law 
in Massachusetts fully 9 out of every 10 cases 
handled by my department in the greater Boston 
district were taken before the state courts. 

Under the Volstead Act the possession of two 
ounces of intoxicating liquor is sufficient evidence 
for a conviction. Under the Massachusetts state 
law a man may have an unlimited stock, may 
transport said stock at his will, throughout the 
state, and may operate a first class distillery to 
his heart's content without violating the state law. 
The only way in which he can be apprehended is 
for keeping and exposing for sale. In spite of this 
lack of statutory provision it was my experience 
that more satisfactory results could be obtained 
before the average local court than before Com- 
missioner Hayes, because of his open hostility to 
the Volstead Act and prohibiton agents in gen- 

An adequate state law is imperative so that the 
five thousand or more local officers may have the 
same opportunity to enforce the law as federal of- 
ficers. As this book goes to press, steps are being 
taken to pass a bill that will bring the state law 
into absolute conformity with the Volstead Act. 
This measure should pass both the House and Sen- 
ate, and will undoubtedly receive the signature of 
the Governor. After the Quincy House raid dry 
speeches and dry votes are in order. Even Charley 
Innes, the custodian of liquors at governors' ban- 
quets, will not advise his friend to act to the con- 
trary. Undoubtedly the wet interests will request 



a referendum vote so that the measure will come 
before the electorate for ratification or rejection 
in the November election. 

It is inconceivable that the law-abiding citizens 
of this Commonwealth will keep Massachusetts in 
the group of states (four in number) which ap- 
parently would nulHfy the constitutional law of the 
land, by failure to pass laws to enforce the 18th 
Amendment to the Constitution. The South tried 
to nullify the slavery amendment. The Old Bay 
State will not attempt to nullify the 18th. 

The enforcement problem could be greatly sim- 
plified if all near-beer saloons; grocery and fruit 
stands selling soft drinks were required by law to 
obtain a license. This license could reserve the 
right for police inspection of the business premises 
at any time and require certain definite regulations 
as to lighting, concealment of illegal traffic, by 
shutters, curtains, etc. If it was possible to inspect 
near-beer saloons or any other place ostensibly 
selling soft drinks at any time when open for busi- 
ness, it would be much easier to shut off the sale 
of intoxicating liquors in such places. A severe 
penalty should be provided for peddling or hipping 
liquor without a license. The walking bar-room is 
a decided menace, and drastic steps are necessary 
to control this nuisance. Taking a nip from the 
bottle produced from the hip of a dirty bar-room 
hanger-on is so unsanitary and indecent that only 
the lowest habitats of the lower world will resort 
to such practices. 

A reasonable reward for securing evidence would 
greatly facilitate the operations of the police and 
prohibition department. This money would not be 
a drain upon the public treasury as convictions 
not only bring in a reasonable amount of money 
in fines, but revenue from taxes. This money 
should not be given as a reward, but rather as 
pay for the inconvenience and time expended in 
securing evidence. 



Our present system of securing federal search 
warrants, is absolutely antiquated. It ought to be 
possible to obtain a warrant at any hour of the 
day or night. It should be possible to secure such 
a warrant in Brockton for Brockton violations. 
Under the present system a Brockton citizen or any 
other law abiding person within 25 miles of Bos- 
ton has to come before the United States Commis- 
sioner in Boston in order to obtain a federal search 
warrant. An affidavit sworn out before a proper 
notary by one or more reputable citizens and de- 
livered to a prohibition agent for presentation to the 
U. S. Commissioner ought to be sufficient evidence 
upon which to issue a search warrant. Under pres- 
ent conditions no search warrant will be issued un- 
less the interested citizen is willing to come before 
the United States Commissioner in Boston and per- 
sonally make an affidavit. Many citizens because of. 
their business interests cannot come to Boston in 
the middle of the day, consequently their evidence 
is useless. Commissioner Hayes would not see the 
President after hours. 

It is safe to assert that two-thirds of the worst 
liquor violations occur in the evening or late at 
night; yet in Boston, when United States Commis- 
sioner Hayes is sitting, it is impossible to secure a 
search warrant after three or four o'clock in the 
afternoon, and from Saturday noon until Monday 
noon no warrant can be obtained under any con- 

The search warrant for the Quincy House ban- 
quet never could have been secured if Commis- 
sioner Hayes had been sitting. Time and time 
again during my regime as Prohibition Chief I 
uncovered liquor violations but was unable to 
secure a warrant because the Commissioner's 
office had closed. The next day was too late. 
Some dives at the beaches near Boston ran wide 
open in the summer of 1921, because no warrant 
could be obtained to search after dark. 



Cabarets sell liquor late at night, and at no other 
time, consequently with a Commissioner refusing 
to issue night warrants such places are fully pro- 
tected unless the prohibition department is fortu- 
nate enough to secure buys in the presence of suffi- 
cient agents to knock off a place at the time of 
the purchase. This is a very dangerous proposi- 
tion, because it is impossible to stage a buy with 
a reasonable force of agents present. When two 
agents tackle a road house single handed some 
one is apt to get hurt. 

It would be helpful and logical if slops could 
be considered as evidence. By slops I mean liquor 
dumped into a pail of water or other receptable 
before the raiding party can secure it. Slops that 
actually proofed from five to ten per cent alcohol 
have been brought into court and thrown out on 
the ground that the court would not consider swill 
as evidence. When the proprietor or the bar tender 
breaks the bottle containing the evidence in the 
presence of two or more officers who are able to 
testify in court that by the odor they are posi- 
tive intoxicating liquor was destroyed in their 
presence, it ought to be possible to obtain a con- 
viction. It is farcical to assume that the proprietor 
or bar tender would rush behind the bar and break 
a bottle of moxie or some other non-intoxicating 

Another handicap of law enforcement which 
could be largely rectified by a little more devotion 
to duty on the part of the judges and a little less 
"kowtowing" to the so-called ethics of the legal 
profession is the frequent continuing of cases. 
Fully half the time of prohibition agents is tied up 
in useless court dilly dallying. Some lawyers seem 
to collect from clients on the basis of the number 
of times cases are continued, and it is needless to 
state that under such circumstances continuances 
are frequent. 


This baiting of clients is a disgrace to the pro- 
fession, but is brazenly practiced by some attorneys 
who have the most to say about legal ethics. The 
ends of justice might better be served if some at- 
torneys would cut out their soft-sob prattle rela- 
tive to the poverty of their clients. I have taken 
bootlegger after bootlegger into court who had 
made thousands of dollars at his nefarious trade 
only to have some attorney literally weep before 
the judge, stating that this poor man had eight to 
ten children and that any fine would be a mis- 
carriage of justice. If the attorney succeeded in 
splitting the fine it was so much velvet in his own 
pocket; the client never benefited. Such lawyers 
ought to announce that their services were free 
and then their charity pleas would carry more 

After a few months in the front line trenches it is 
easy to believe that Uncle Sam pays one depart- 
ment for securing evidence for convictions and an- 
other department for discharging the culprits. One 
of the worst cases that comes to my mind is that of 
John Chumura, a Springfield baker, who was 
brought before United States Commissioner John 
L. Rice some fourteen months ago for the illegal 
distribution of liquor. 

Two Springfield policemen and two agents tes- 
tified against this man, and it is creditably reported 
that his own admissions to the United States Com- 
missioner were sufficient to hold him for the Grand 
Jury. Fourteen months later the case was thrown 
out of court by Judge Anderson on the ground, I 
am told, of a defective search warrant. The search 
warrant, according to my information, never left 
the office of the United States Commissioner in 
Springfield, and none of the four witnesses in the 
case were ever called before Judge Anderson. 

More actual co-operation between the evidence 
securing department, the prosecuting department 
and the judicial department would greatly facili- 



tate enforcement of the Volstead Act. The Gov- 
ernment has never seen fit to appropriate sufficient 
money for any of these departments, and it has 
always been my contention that any time that 
Congress really wanted to make this nation bone 
dry the Volstead Act could be enforced as well as 
a majority of our national laws. 

The cost of prohibiton enforcement is not so 
heavy as some would have us believe, and as a mat- 
ter of fact the Government could have appropriated 
twenty million for the past year instead of seven 
and one half millions with very little additional ex- 
pense. According to figures from the New York 
Herald the appraised value of property seized but 
not destroyed by the prohibition department during 
the past year was eleven million dollars. 

Another two and one half millions, according to 
the same paper, was the net return from fines. 
The income from double taxes and additional pen- 
alties under section 35 of the prohibition act show 
assessments of fifty-four million dollars. 

I am sorry to state with the present system of 
fines only a small percentage of this fifty-four mil- 
lion has been actually collected. The man with 
sufficient money to finance the building and opera- 
tion of a still (and some plants that I have de- 
stroyed represented an outlay of several thousand 
dollars) employs some derelict to run the still. 
When the still and the derelict are captured the 
financier immediately furnishes bail, pays for a 
first class attorney and the fines imposed by the 
court. The derelict has no property, consequently 
no taxes can be collected. As soon as the courts are 
ready to impose a jail sentence the man higher up 
will find it impossible to hire men to go to jail for 
him. The hired distiller will turn state's evidence, 
and it will be possible to collect 100 per cent on 

Some surprisingly influential men are mixed up 
in the booze traffic in Boston, and with a stiffening 



in the court sentences it will be possible to either 
catch these men or drive them out of the busi- 
ness. There is a rum clique on State Street, Bos- 
ton, that is carrying on under present conditions 
with almost absolute safety. It is this crowd that 
is making a farce out of many court cases, and is 
even trying to dictate in the selection of agents. 

Prohibition officers who could act as secret ser- 
vice men would be of tremendous advantage to law 
enforcement. The few agents assigned to any 
state department are soon listed by the bootleg- 
gers, so that their value as securers of evidence 
is greatly impaired. Every scheme was employed 
during my experience as Prohibition Chief to learn 
the names and personal appearance of my agents. 
Bootleggers used to call at the office with phony 
information for no other reason than to look over 
the personnel. Many telephone calls were received- 
relative to illegal traffic at some particular point, 
when agents were rushed to this place, nothing was 
found except a number of bootleggers. 

I was able to keep my men fairly well protected, 
however, except for court cases. Whenever an 
agent appeared in court, the bootlegger's attorney 
took particular care to find out everything possible 
about the agent, including his home address. This 
information was passed from city to city. A num- 
ber of secret service men would have been of in- 
estimable value. 

The method of appointing agents in vogue while 
I was on the job was so cumbersome, and the ap- 
plications passed through so many hands, that most 
of my appointees were well known to most of the 
liquor traffic prior to their appointment. 

I have felt for some time that a New England 
Society for the enforcement of prohibition, com- 
posed of law abiding citizens who actually wanted 
to see the prohibitory law given a fair trial, would 
be of tremendous value to the prohibition depart- 
ments in the various New England States. Such 



a society could accomplish much because it would 
be unhampered by Federal red tape, bureaucratic 
limitations and other Federal restrictions. Much 
of the rum running is interstate traffic, consequent- 
ly such a society should embrace all of New Eng- 
land and eventually the entire U. S. A. 

New England has always stood as a bulwark 
for law and order, and the great mass of people who 
actually believe in genuine impartial law enforce- 
ment must serve notice on the rum-runner, the 
bootlegger, the illicit still operator, and the liquor 
criminals, "Ye shall not pass." 

I am tremendously optimistic as to the ultimate 
triumph of prohibition law enforcement. Every 
month makes enforcement so much easier, for it 
marks the death of so many more habitual drinkers, 
and with the saloon gone the liquor trade has 
no recruiting ground. 

Eliminate the hypocrisy of the private cellar 
stock and its attending unrest, impose jail sen- 
tences instead of picayune fines, adopt a state law 
in Massachusetts with a kick like the famous 
"White Horse" whiskey, license the retailers of soft 
drinks, modernize the securing of search warrants 
and some of our antiquated custom bound court 
procedure and establish a reasonable secret ser- 
vice in connection with the prohibition department 
and the prohibitory law can be enforced. 

My answer to the title of this chapter, "How 
the Dry Laws Can Be Enforced," is by persistent, 
pitiless, publicity relative to the true situation. If 
the readers of this book will satisfy themselves 
as to the truth of my statements regarding prohi- 
bition law enforcement and then go forth and pro- 
claim the facts the liquor serpent will take to cover 
before the first echo from the united voice of the 
Dry Forces can return. 



Chapter IX. 

In analyzing the handicaps to complete and effec- 
tive prohibition enforcement, we must place politics 
at the head of the list. Politicians — ^and in Massa- 
chusetts we have a fine array of those whose politi- 
cal records reek with the odors of rum and bar-floor 
sawdust — are the gadflies of the dry idealist. Pro- 
hibition offices are the honey-syrup that draws them 
in droves to the feast; they would like to pack the 
force of dry agents with their friends and constitu- 
ents. When the Republican party came into power 
last spring almost every Congressman in Massachu- 
setts had a flock of friends slated for prohibition 
jobs whose chief qualification for the position was 
their proficiency as political door bell ringers. 

Among the professional politicians prohibition is 
a plaything. They do not take the problems of en- 
forcement seriously; they have been niggardly in 
their appropriations for dry enforcement but are on 
the job every moment when it comes to picking the 
choice, meaty scraps out of the pork barrel. They 
are playing football with a great moral issue and a 
section of the Constitution of the United States of 
America. Would the great American public toler- 
ate for a moment partisan trading and loose parley- 
ing over the laws relating to theft or burglary? 
Why, then, will the public permit prohibition to be 
made the political football, kicked and tossed and 
fumbled on a surface muddied by the flood from the 
bootleggers' reservoir? It is time the public served 
notice on the politicians, by an affirmative position at 
the voting booth, that they cannot publicly deride 
and toss into the discard laws adopted under the 
provisions laid down by the fathers of our country. 

Fortune, perhaps, decreed that the Republican 
Party was to be the first to give prohibition a set- 
back, by opening the ranks of the dry enforcement 



army to the destructive operation of the spoils sys- 
tem. The Eighteenth Amendment became eflFective 
on January 16, 1920, while a Democratic Adminis- 
tration was in power. 

To that Administration fell the lot of creating the 
enforcement organization throughout the Nation. 

This was a task of enormous proportions. It was 
necessary to build up an organization to meet con- 
ditions then not wholly clear. The work was highly 
technical and so involved that it required many 
weeks experience on the job for an enforcement 
agent to feel that he was beginning to understt*nd his 
task. Here in New England, the Government ap- 
pointed as an enforcement agent, a man with years 
of experience in investigating liquor affairs for the 
Revenue Department. This man, and his co-work- 
ers in the offices of prohibition director for the sev- 
eral States, remained on the job less than 18 months 
when they were turned out to make way for new 

The Republican party was swept into power on 
the great tidal wave of 1920. The hordes of poli- 
tical hangers-on looked with covetous eyes oi the 
hundreds of posts then filled by men who had no 
claims to favor at the hands of the ruling party. The 
great prohibition enforcement machine was dis- 
mantled and overhauled in the G. O. P. machine- 
shop and came out with a new coat of paint adminis- 
tered by the hands of Lodge, Winslow, Tinkham, 
Innes and their confrers. 

Even this did not satisfy the politicians. Under 
the enforcement scheme launched by the Democratic 
Administration there were too few plums on the 
political tree. New England, for example, had a 
single chief enforcement agent, with prohibition di- 
rectors in charge of the permit awards in each State. 
The entire department was reorganized so that in 
each State there was both a director and a chief en- 
forcement agent to be appointed from among the 



ranks of the faithful Republican workers at the polls. 

In Massachusetts Senator Henry Cabot Lodge was 
the Czar and dictator. The chairman of the Senate 
Foreign Relations Committee did not lose touch with 
the domestic relations of Massachusetts realizing 
that he would need the support of the dry enthusiasts 
of Massachusetts when he should come up for re- 
election in the Fall of 1922, he amiably patronized 
the Anti-Saloon League of Massachusetts by inviting 
them to suggest men for the jobs. The Anti-Saloon 
League was of course limited in some respects; it 
must pick men with a Republican label, and it must 
pick them from such widely separated districts of 
the State that these political plums along with others 
to be distributed would be widely scattered through- 
out the Bay Sate and all local factions satisfied. 
When the Anti-Saloon League, with the backing of. 
the church forces, chanced to name as enforcement 
agent a man who was determined to enforce the law 
from the top to the bottom — against the politicians 
as well as against the poor, ignorant foreigner — Mr. 
Lodge could not stand the pressure — such an amaz- 
ing lack of discretion was unbearable. He deserted 
Wilson and tossed the standard of law-enforcement 
into the gutter. When he foresaw the protest of 
public opinion from Massachusetts, he attempted to 
meet it by throwing responsibility back to the Anti- 
Saloon League and inviting them to name Wilson's 

This is what the public has to endure from a 
"statesman" who never gained any happiness in 
voting for a dry measure except when he could help 
pass the Volstead Act over the veto of his arch- 
enemy and political victim, Woodrow Wilson. 

Let us examine his record on prohibition meas- 
ures. It is dryer than those of Tinkham, Gallivan 
and Tague only by the measure of Mr. Lodge's 
shrewder political sagacity. 

The Hon. Henry Cabot Lodge voted for the Anti- 



Canteen law which shut off the flow of liquor in 
army canteens but somewhat later, to be specific, 
January 9, 1917, he voted against prohibition for the 
District of Columbia. In other words, the Senator 
favored arid conditions for soldiers but could not 
stand for any degree of dryness in Washington 
which is his domicile a greater part of the time. 

In July, 1917, he voted for the Prohibition Food 
Control Bill but not until after it had been badly 
mutilated by amendments which he favored. He not 
only voted against the National Prohibition Resolu- 
tion in 1917 but tried to handicap its effectiveness by 
favorable votes on amendments designed to make its 
final adoption less likely. 

The reservations in the League of Nations Coven- 
ant which he fought for are no greater than the 
reservations he tried to put into the dry laws. Sen- 
ator Lodge has repeatedly opposed prohibition in 
public speeches. He was also very strenuous in his 
opposition to the Nineteenth Amendment (Equal 
Suffrage), which is bound to be an important factor 
in the popularization of the Eighteenth Amendment. 
His powerful political influence has been, is, and 
probably always will be, exerted against prohibition 
in any form. 

Although he finally voted for the Volstead Act, it 
has been said that he did so with the reservation that 
since President Woodrow Wilson vetoed the Act, 
Wilson, of course, was wrong, and consequently he 
could conscientiously vote for the measure. He is 
also reported to have said when he voted for the 
Volstead Act, that he had always opposed constitu- 
tional prohibition and did not believe the amendment 
should have been put into the Constitution. 

His attitude relative to voting for the Volstead 
Act, because Woodrow Wilson vetoed it, is in keep- 
ing with his numerous about-faces on the League of 
Nations. Prior to the advent of Wilsonianism, he 
is recorded as favoring a League of Nations. Presi- 


dent Wilson helped frame such a League, and then 
Senator Lodge vehemently opposed it. 

President Wilson passed out of the picture through 
defeat and Senator Lodge turned an about face and 
was a leader in the disarmament conference, which 
(has adopted many features of the League of Nations. 

The following statement from the New York 
Times is indicative of the opinion some living outside 
of Massachusetts have of our senior Senator: 

"By the merest accident of government, Henry 
Cabot Lodge was enabled to defeat the altruistic 
dream, the very pinnacle of world idealism, when he 
killed the League of Nations. It is an unfortunate 
incident and a serious commentary on government 
that one man, renowned chiefly for his political 
astuteness and acumen could undo the great efforts 
of the finest minds in the universe. 

The New York Times querously asks if any man 
since the dawn of history has ever done so much 
'harm. We are inclined to concede that not even 
Nero or any of his followers in disaster and world 
catastrophes were anything like the peers of the 
aforesaid Lodge, whose re-election will cast a reflec- 
tion and a blot on the escutcheon of the Common- 
wealth of Massachusetts not easily eradicated." 

Congressman Samuel E. Winslow of the fourth 
Massachusetts District is reported to be the closest 
to Senator Lodge of any of the Massachusetts Dele- 
gation. He dictated the appointment of Mr. Elmer 
C. Potter, the present state director, and has been the 
man who has demanded and succeeded in keeping 
him on the job. 

Congressman Winslow makes an excellent nmning 
mate for the Senior Senator as he, too, has been 
consistently inconsistent. He favored booze for 
Washington but not for the defenders of our country 
during the world war. He voted against the Hobson 
Resoution for National Prohibition ; he failed to vote 
on the Alaskan Prohibition Bill. He voted "yes" on 



the Jones-Randall anti-advertising and bone dry 
laws, after the adoption of some amendments. He 
voted *'no" on the Sheppard-Barkley District of 
Columbia prohibition bill; "no" on the National 
Prohibition Resolution; "yes" on the passage of the 
Enforcement code, known as the Volstead Act, but 
"no" on passing the measure over the President's 

The "drys" in the fourth congressional district 
can get little nourishment from the above record, 
especially when the wet affiliations of some of the 
Congressman's closest political allies in Worcester 
and Milford are analyzed. 

It is hardly necessary to present the record of the 
Hon. George Holden Tinkham, Congressman from 
the 11th district who is said to openly boast that 
his record is 100% alcoholic. Apparently the only 
times that he has failed to vote against Prohibition 
measures have been during his absence from 
Washington which is said to be more frequent than 
congressional duties ordinarily warrant. 

An analysis of the Prohibition department heads 
in Washington is not particularly reassuring. Major 
Roy A. Haynes appears to be 100% for prohibition 
enforcement and his consistently dry record in Ohio 
adds weight to his repeated assertions that he is 
doing his best to enforce the prohibitory laws. He 
is not the generalissimo in prohibition enforcement, 
however, as many believe, and labors under many 
handicaps not the least of which is his immediate 
superior, David H. Blair, Commissioner of Internal 
Revenue, who, in turn, kow tows to the Secretary of 
the Treasury, Andrew Mellon. Secretary Mellon 
can hardly be listed as bone dry, or even passably 
dry. His alleged large holdings in Whiskey certifi- 
cates are not a particularly happy coincidence in view 
of the fact that he is the titular head of prohibition 
enforcement in the nation. He has never been in 
a position to cast a public vote for or against prohi- 



bition, but his private business affairs relative to the 
liquor traffic are interesting. 

Mr. Mellon, with the estate of Henry C. Frick, was 
a joint owner of the Distillery at Broad Ford, 
Westmoreland County, of A. Overbold & Co., which 
was founded in 1810 by Frick's grandfather, whose 
great success was the boyhood incentive of the coke 
king. In the bonded warehouses of this distillery 
there were, in February, 1921, 1,500,000 gallons of 
whiskey, probably valued at $18,000,000 to $20,- 

Mr. Mellon came into a one-third ownership of the 
Overbold plant years ago through the fact that Mr. 
Frick, who had married a granddaughter of Abram 
Overbold and inherited an interest in the distillery, 
had borrowed some $20,000 from Judge Thomas W. 
Mellon, father of the Secretary, for his first business 
venture, suggested to Andrew Mellon, on settlemenc 
of the estate, that he take over a third interest in 
the distillery. 

With the advent of prohibition the company went 
into liquidation, and what remained was turned over 
to the Union Trust Company of Pittsburg. Mr. 
Mellon, it is said, never had a personal part in the 
distillery affairs and for years aimed to get rid of 
his stock, claiming there was no profit during the 
war on account of high costs of grain.* 

Mr. Mellon, however, is said to have admitted to a 
Boston Sunday Post reporter, that he had never been 
in favor of the Constitutional amendment, though 
heartily in favor of more rigid curtailment or super- 
vision of the liquor traffic. A constitutional pro- 
vision, he said, was an extreme step in that it at- 
tempted to control private and personal conduct of 
the citizen and must fail on account of its very 

With his reputed large holdings in whiskey cer- 
tificates, and his frank admission that he does not 
favor the prohibitory amendments how can the pub- 



lie expect firm and aggressive enforcement of the 
prohibitory laws? 

Commissioner Blair is pictured by some as a weak 
sister a mere mouth-piece for the Secretary. A man 
who does exactly as he is told, no more, no less. 
When Federal Prohibition Commissioner Haynes 
tried to hold back the drive of the wets to release 
large quantities of beer, just prior to the passage 
of the anti-beer bill in November, 1921, Commission- 
er Blair, and Secretary Mellon overruled him and 
opened wide the sluiceways. Thousands of gallons 
of beer were rushed out of storage during the last 
stages of the passage of the anti-beer bill when 
it was known by all that it was only a matter of time 
when the bill would pass and receive the President's 
O. K. The beer interests must have had some pow- 
erful friend in court. 

As a matter of practice, Blair is the button-pusher 
in the Mellon Hotel, and Haynes is Blair's bell-boy. 
Blair is an i^k-spreader who is willing to take the 
blame off the shoulders of the politicians for the 
sake of his ten thousand a year or so. In every 
well-regulated establishment there is a buffer to take 
up and absorb the shocks from the bumpers. Com- 
missioner Blair is the buffer of the Revenue 

When I was removed he issued a statement in 
which he assumed full responsibility. But in view 
of the Quincy House Raid, people paid more atten- 
tion to Lodge's silence than to Blair's forensic on 
the "Whyness of Nothing.]" 

In view of the attitude of Secretary Mellon and 
Commissioner Blair it is not at all strange that when 
Senator Lodge or some of his emissaries such as 
Winslow, Tinkham and Innes demanded my dis- 
charge that they acquiesced with characteristic 
Washingtonian camouflage. Commissioner Blair 
the independent, the courageous, the extremely dry 
federal office holder, manfully took all the blame for 



my dismissal. Such time-worn political bunkum 
may still be effective in the south, Commissioner 
Blair's native land, but will hardly do in the cultured 
and politically wise north east. The fact that the 
Senior Senator from Massachusetts, Hon. Henry 
Cabot Lodge, permitted Commissioner Blair to ad- 
vance such a superficial, ill-conceived and easily re- 
futed excuse is taken by many shrewd political ob- 
servers as excellent proof that the Senator is losing 
his grip on the political situation in Massachusetts. 
He has long underestimated the intelligence of his 
constituents in the Old Bay State. The reaction 
from such a sublime and peaceful, even if precarious, 
state of mind is apt to be as sudden and as discon- 
certing as the kick from the famous White Horse 
whiskey of Quincy House fame. 



Chapter X. 

Gunning for the rum-runner is always exciting 
and can hardly be placed in the same class with 
tiddley-winks. The rum-runner is a different type 
from the walking bar-room or the manufacturer 
and vendor of moonshine. He generally operates 
in a high-priced car and carries a stock of con- 
siderable value. Consequently, he will fight harder 
and use more ingenuity in preventing capture. He 
sells his stock in most instances to the so-called 
high-class trade, such as the wealthy man who 
wishes to replenish his pre- Volstead cellar stock, 
the steward of the private club, or to the State- 
Street broker, who acts as middle-man in the dis- 

A pet scheme of at least one bootlegging ring 
is to sell highVgrade stuff in case lots to the stew- 
ards of some of the exclusive clubs for the top 
price, and then pay a dollar a bottle for the empties, 
provided the labels are not damaged. The bottles 
are then filled with moonshine, sealed with imita- 
tion stamps, and sold to the man who can only 
afford to buy a bottle or two at a time as A-one 

One characteristic of the rum-runner which 
seems to predominate is his everlasting boasting. 
To hear one of these individuals talk, anyone would 
get the impression that he was the bravest, clever- 
est and noblest of the Jesse James type of bandit. 

Rum-runners always talk in large figures, and 
because of their bravado and exaggeration, many 
people have the impression that the traffic is a 
great deal larger in volume than the actual facts 

I have posed as a bootlegger myself in order to 
catch a bootlegger. As a rule, I would start the 



conversation by trying to purchase ten barrels or 
a car-load of whiskey. The bootlegger would 
counter with the information that he could not 
bother with such small-town business. If I cared 
to talk on a worth-while basis, say two or three 
car-loads, he would be glad to accommodate me. 
After a reasonable amount of such cheap and harm- 
less talk, a trade might be consummated for from 
three to six bottles, possibly a case. It is such talk 
which leads those who are unacquainted with the 
facts, or those anxious to distort the truth, to say 
that more rum is sold under prohibition than in the 
days of license. 

A good example of a bootlegger's bluff and blus- 
ter which led a good churchman to spread propa- 
ganda against prohibition is the case of a doctor 
who has been a close friend for some time. He 
came to me one day and said, "Wilson, I can buy 
a barrel of whiskey any time from a bootlegger," 
but unfortunately he refrained from giving the 
name of said bootlegger. I answered ''Marvelous! 
Why not buy the barrel"? He answered "I do not 
drink." Then "Why not buy it to sell," I replied, 
and he answered quite indignantly, "Why, you 
know I am not a bootlegger." "Yes," I replied, 
"and the bootlegger knew that you did not drink 
or that you would not take the barrel for a gift. 
I might go to my own church on a Sunday and 
take orders all day long for barrels of whiskey, 
safe in the knowledge that no one would ever call 
my bluff. Doctor, I should advise either trying to 
buy this barrel or ceasing to be a propagandist in 
favor of the Svets'." 

One exciting capture of several bootleggers near 
the close of my regime as Prohibition Chief is of- 
ered as a typical example. Arrangements were 
made by one of my agents with a bootlegger to buy 
one hundred fifty gallons of moonshine at six dol- 
lars a gallon. The bootlegger would not talk with 
my man until he had actually seen the money, so 



the day prior to the capture nine hundred dollars 
was deposited in a certain bank and the bootlegger 
was allowed to see that my man actually had that 
much money. Arrangements were then made to 
have the goods delivered at a certain garage in 
Boston. My agent who was to make the purchase, 
was to be at the garage at seven in the evening with 
the nine hundred dollars. Since none of these gen- 
tlemen trust each other my agent insisted upon the 
bootlegger bringing in a sample of his goods before 
handing over the money. At about six in the even- 
ing, four agents were loaded into a limousine 
and driven into the garage lying fiat on their backs 
in the car. At this time, the bootlegger had sentinels 
watching all avenues of approach to the garage, so 
that if my agents had come in any other way, the 
transaction would have fallen through. At the ap- 
pointed time, the bootlegger put in his appearance 
at the garage, met my man in a private office, and 
insisted on seeing the money. Then my man in- 
sisted on seeing some of the goods. While this 
was going on, a Dodge truck had been going up 
and down the street. The bootlegger signalled for 
the truck, which stopped in front of the garage, 
and he lifted out a five-gallon can of moonshine and 
carried it into the office for examination by my 
agent. The truck immediately started up again 
but soon turned round and came back toward the 
garage. As the truck was about to pass, my agent 
jumped the bootlegger with the five gallons of 
moonshine. The agents in the car rushed out and 
held up the truck. The capture happened so rapid- 
ly that no gun-play was necessary, although the 
bootlegger in the private office put up quite a 
strenuous scrap. 
^ The men who run whiskey from Canada often- 
times have some very clever false bottoms or other 
places of concealment in their cars. One runner, 
I can remember, instead of having the usual leather 
cushion in the front and back seats, had inserted 



tanks which would hold in the neighborhood of 
twenty gallons each, the tank being covered, of 
course, with leather. Unless a person got into the 
car and leaned against the tank no suspicion would 
be aroused that there was anything unusual about 
the car. 

Oftentimes the rum-runner carries a lady or two, 
or even his family to divert suspicion. Sometimes 
the liquor is concealed in a truck loaded with hay, 
bricks or anything else for concealment. I picked 
up a bootlegger near Long Meadow at one time 
who made the mistake of carrying the same load 
of furniture each time. A farmer's wife's sus- 
picion was aroused on seeing the same chair go 
by the farm on a number of different occasions 
and consequently tipped off my office. 

I have found the contraband liquor encased in 
bales of hay which had been shipped through from 
Canada, or in carloads of potatoes, turnips, or even 
Christmas trees. At one time a fairly good busi- 
ness was carried on by freight cars loaded with po- 
tatoes at St. Francis or Fort Kent near the Cana- 
dian line. The whiskey was smuggled across the 
border in the night and concealed in the potato 
cars. Each car had its potato bug. The potato 
bug is the man placed in the car to care for the 
fire in order to prevent the freezing of the potatoes. 
En route to Massachusetts, the potato bug breaks 
the stove occasionally, necessitating a stop in some 
of the larger cities. Whenever a stop is made, some 
of the booze is sold. By the time the car reaches 
its destination, all of the liquor has been sold. 

Every precaution is taken by the rum-runner to 
guard against capture. Sometimes they operate 
in pairs, an empty car running ahead. If no traps 
are found, the other car with the load passes 
through with safety. Sometimes when the road is 
known to be guarded, one bootlegger with an 
empty car with brilliant lights drives ahead. The 
man with the load follows in the rear without lights. 



While the agents are busy stopping the first car, 
the other man steps on the gas and shoots by before 
he can be stopped. 

Desperate tactics are sometimes resorted to, such 
as driving at tremendous rates of speed without 
lights, or through congested traffic. The rum-run- 
ner has no regard for any law, and consequently 
is a serious menace to the road. In one case in 
Maine, a bootlegger operating in a Cole Eight, the 
prohibition agents in a Buick Six, deliberately ran 
into the prohibition car, badly wrecking both auto- 
mobiles. His object was to cripple the agents so 
that some of his pals could run through unmolested. 

This case had a very peculiar ending. The boot- 
legger was taken into court and fined a thousand 
dollars, which he promptly paid. The agents were 
then served with a trespass writ by the attorney for 
the bootlegger for occupying more than half the 
road, and requested to furnish bail in five thousand 
dollars each.^ As the agents were unable to fur- 
nish that amount of bail, they were held by the 
local sheriff until the next day. The district at- 
torney supplied the bail on the afternoon of the fol- 
lowing day, and that night the agents picked up 
another rum-runner, much to the surprise of the 
latter gentleman, who stated "Where did you fel- 
lows come from? I understood the sheriff had all 
the agents locked up." 

A very amusing case in Boston, one agent 
entered a house to arrange for a buy, and two 
other agents were close by in an automobile so 
as to be ready for any emergency. The agent in 
the house came out with three Italians, entered 
a high-powered car, and drove away, followed by 
the other agents. The car passed through Boston 
into Somerville, Everett, Revere, Chelsea, back 
into Revere and stopped at a house. The agent and 
the Italians went into the house, and in a short 
time the agents on the outside received a signal 
to rush the house. They found the other agent 



in the act of paying for fifteen gallon cans of moon- 
shine. The Italians were immediately arrested 
and the cans seized. The Italians protested most 
violently at being arrested, and finally convinced 
the agents that they had better sample the cans. 
It was found that all contained water, except two, 
which had a small pocket underneath the stopper 
filled with alcohol. The balance was water. As 
luck would have it, there was sufficient alcohol in 
the two cans to bring the Italians into court for 
illegal sale and possession of intoxicating liquor. 
In view of the small quantity, however, the court 
let the men oflf very easily. If I had been the pre- 
siding justice, I should have given a double sen- 
tence, one for selling liquor, and the other for 
misrepresenting the goods sold. 

One very humorous experience shows that the 
most conscientious prohibition agent may associate 
with a bootlegger without knowing it. I hired an 
exceptionally good chauffeur from a certain auto- 
mobile concern in Boston. With this chauffeur and 
an agent, I raided a large distillery about twenty 
miles outside of Boston. I noticed that both the 
chauffeur and the man running the still acted very 
peculiarly. After a time, I sent the agent and 
chauffeur away on an errand and approached the 
owner of the still and his wife. I said "It was a 
mean trick for that chauffeur to give you away." 
"What!" said the man. "Did he tell you that I 
was running a still?" "How would I know you 
were," I replied, "unless he did." The man and 
his wife then grew very talkative and told me the 
whole story. It seems that the automobile man in 
Boston was financing this farmer, paying him five 
dollars a gallon for his moonshine. My chauffeur 
had been coming to the place twice a week to carry 
away the product. 

Some of the hiding-places of the rum-runners 
are very ingenious. I have found the liquor in 
false coal bins, in false closets, under the steps 



of stairways. In one case, I found a barrel which 
had been buried in the ground and a porch built 
over it. Needless to say, this latter hiding place 
was not found without a tip. This particular boot- 
legger had sold another moonshine and charged the 
regular price for real whiskey. By way of retalia- 
tion, my informant told me where the whiskey was 
concealed. More bona fide tips are received in this 
way than in any other. 

One of the most encouraging feaures of prohi- 
hibition law enforcement is the fact that those en- 
gaged in the liquor traffic are constantly crooking 
each other. No business of any consequence can 
be built on crookedness. Bootleggers do not trust 
each other, and the consuming public is rapidly 
awakening to the fact that they cannot trust any- 
one engaged in this illicit, poison-dispensing traffic. 

Even a man with the nerve and the equipment 
to run bona fide whiskey from Canada finds his list 
of customers seriously limited, because of lack of 
confidence. The man of limited means who has 
paid ten to fifteen dollars for a bottle of Old Rye 
Whiskey and finds that he has purchased moon- 
shine is apt to be a very wary customer the next 
time. Especially, if the moonshine is of such a 
poor grade that it makes him sick. 

The moonshiner who makes his unpallatable 
liquor in a cellar, has a printing plant on the first 
floor, and a bottling plant on the third floor, has 
seriously cut into the rum-running business. The 
"shiner" can do a very creditable job on imitation 
in everything except the contents of the bottle, and 
that is of no consequence to him as long as he gets 
his price and his profit. 

One effective preventative against the road men- 
ace of the rum-runner would be refusal to issue a 
driver's permit to any man convicted of this ne- 
farious traffic. 

The rum runner with his exaggerated ego, and 
his crooked methods will soon disappear. 





Chapter XL 

The absurdity of having wet politicians dictate 
the personnel and the policy of dry law enforcement 
is almost too obvious for comment. Nevertheless 
some observations are necessary as so many near 
statesmen and professional politicians are so de- 
cidedly wet in private, and so vociferously dry in 
public that many, ardently in favor of prohibition 
but neophytes in the ways of the **pols", are badly 
fooled. These men speak at a Christian Endeavor 
Meeting one night and participate (perhaps indulge 
would be a more descriptive word) in a wet banquet 
the next evening. They are governed by policy and 
never by conviction. Such '*pols" vote one way and 
drink another. What this old world needs today 
and especially law enforcement is politicians or states- 
men if possible, who are actuated by personal con- 
victions rather than the reactions received from their 
listening posts. Leaders are wanted who will stand 
up, and beat the tom tom if necessary and thus help 
mould public opinion. We have had quite enough 
of the timid reactionary variety who have to be 
pushed into constructive aggressive action. The 
public is through with trying to push its elective 
officials into the performance of their duty. Lead- 
ership of the type of Theodore Roosevelt will save 
the day. 

Roosevelt was not always right but he was always 
forging fearlessly ahead according to his own con- 
victions. No man ever beat the tom tom more than 
Theodore Roosevelt. No man was ever more round- 
ly abused for being a notoriety seeker and boosting 
of the big *'I AM" yet he is classed as one of, if not 
the greatest American. He did more than any other 
man in the history of our country to awaken the 



public conscience and stimulate 100%, virile 

The Republican party today la« ks leadership, es- 
pecially in Massachusetts. There is no outstanding 
leader in the Old Bay State and as a consequence 
the G. O. P. ship is headed for the rocks. 

It is useless to protest and do nothing. 
Someone must take the chance of soiling his gar- 
ments and the serenity of his home life by mixing 
in the political whirl. If the party is to be purged 
it must be at the primaries in September. 

Men who are sincerely dry with the nerve to take 
the gaff and abuse they are sure to receive must 
be nominated. It is foolhardy to expect the prohibi- 
tion enforcement department to get results if a large 
percentage of the State and City officials are either 
slackers on their jobs or secretly conniving to bum 
the bridges behind the men sworn to enforce the 

My discharge as prohibition chief for too im- 
partially enforcing the law I had taken an oath to 
enforce may lead other men endeavoring to fill a 
similar position to believe that discretion is wiser 
than valor when the law is violated by the big fel- 
lows. We must see to it that my successor h not 
intimidated in this way. The fight must be carried 
to the wet and luke warm politicians so persistently 
and so effectively that they will either buck up in 
their enforcement endeavors or find certain defeat 
staring them in the face. In some instances defeat 
is the only remedy, while in the case of some officials 
an aroused public opinion will ^et the desired results. 

As Chief Enforcement officer I was pestered con- 
tinually by wet politicians trying to dictate the ap- 
pointment of dry agents. While these gentlemen 
could not make me recommend their men they were 
in a position to retard me in securing appointment of 
competent trustworthy agents. 

Such tactics must cease. The man sworn to en- 



force the Prohibitory Law should have every co- 
operation. He must have clean cut honest fearless 
100% prohibitionists for agents. It is just as ridicu- 
lous to expect a wet politician's wet selection as 
agent to inforce the law as it is to expect a millinery 
saleswoman to sell steel products. In other words 
a business corporation will not employ a salesman 
who does not know and believe in the particular 
article he is supposed to sell. The prohibition de- 
partment should not employ agents who do not be- 
lieve and actually support the Volstead Act. Agents 
selected by 100% prohibitionists are not infallible 
but those selected by anti-prohibitionists are impos- 
sible. Politics and prohibition enforcement ought 
to be segregated. Quoting from Dr. Frank King- 
don's Tremont Temple speech, "If politicians persist 
in meddling in prohibition enforcement it is the duty 
of the churches to dabble in politics to the extent that 
the politicians who would make a farce of the pro- 
hibitory laws are put out of office." 

Under the leadership of Senator Lodge and his 
lieutenants Innes, Bottomly, et al, the G. O. P. was 
practically wiped off the map in 1912. These same 
so-called leaders are steering the old party for the 
same shallow rocky waters, and unless the best 
citizens of the Old Commonwealth immediately take 
a hand the Republican Party is due for the toboggan. 
Even this bugaboo, however, will not deter those 
standing squarely for law enforcement. Our con- 
stitutional laws are of vastly more importance than 
any party. 

Certain leeches in the body politic that collect both 
ways regardless of who wins must be eliminated. 
Men with the courage of their conviction whose 
ideals are those of the general public rather than -f 
State Street should be entered in the primary lists 
against our publicly dry and privately wet politicians. 

The political aspect of my removal is well illus- 
trated by the following editorial appearing in the 



Boston Telegram, January 21, 1922. While I do not 
consider myself a martyr or even a near martyr, the 
folly of allowing a few wet politicians to dictate the 
destinies of the Republican party is clearly shown 
in this editorial. It is not a question of whether 
Wilson was removed or not but whether wet politi- 
cians can supervise with impunity the exact degree 
and thoroughness with which the dry laws are to I>t 
enforced. The Telegram is undoubtedly correct in 
its statement — traitors of the G. O. P. could not 
have planned a more effective way in which to in- 
jure the party. The question that every thoughtful 
Republican should answer to his own satisfaction, is, 
"Are certain prominent Republicans who generally 
collect both ways on all Legislation, more interested 
in the rum ring than they are in the G. O. P? 


If some traitor within the Republican party had 
bribed men to wreck the organization, he could not have 
suggested a better method of bringing ruin than by re- 
moving Harold D. Wilson federal prohibition enforce- 
ment officer from his Boston post. 

Wilson's crime was committed when he took the con- 
istitution of the United States seriously and accepted it 
as the law of the land. He believed that the prohibi- 
tion amendment, being an integral part of the funda- 
mental law of the land, should be enforced, even when 
the violators happened to be members of the Republican 
party gathered at the Quincy House to fete the Govern- 
or of the Commonwealth. 

Wilson is being punished by being driven from Mass- 

In the future, men sworn to do their duty as officers 
of the federal government will realize that they are 
expected to make mental reservations when taking the 
oath, and that they are supposed to do their duty only 
when it will not injure Republican politicians. 

Today, what do we see? 

A war veteran who does his duty and attempts to 
enforce the law is driven from his position because he 
offended Republican politicians. 

The petty, narrow-minded, short-sighted Republican 
politicians who have driven out Wilson, have signed 
their own death warrants. Their party is doomed. 



When the next election day comes they will find that 
men and women who believe in the constitution, who up- 
hold law and order, will repudiate them for what they 
are — law-breakers and terrorists. 

What a desperate gang the politicians are. They are 
the anarchists, truly. They want law only when the 
other fellow is affected, but they demand for themselves 
the right to break any law without fear of punishment. 

If Harold D. Wilson, persecuted by politicians, re- 
turns to Massachusetts, he will be able to defeat any 
other Republican who opposes him for the governorship. 

Is that why the group desiring to murder him politi- 
cally sees to it that he is offered another iob outside of 
the state? Do they want to get Wilson away, so far 
away that the citizens of Massachusetts will forget him 
and what he has done? 

I take exception to this editorial in one respect 
only, that is, the public will forget Wilson, but not 
law enforcement. Law enforcement is the real issue 
and not Harold D. Wilson. The Republican party 
can still prove it stands **four square" for law and 
order or law enforcement not by the reinstatement 
of Wilson or his elevation to some other post, but 
by the absoute repudiation of the group of wet 
"pols? who stand squarely for rum or ruin. 

The quicker the Republican party is purged of 
Charley Innes and his errand boy cohorts the better 
for the G. O. P. and all citizens who believe in one 
law which is the same for all men. 

It is these men who are handicapping the enforce- 
ment of the Volstead Act, and it is the same crowd 
who are constantly retarding the passage of any 
progressive humanitarian legislation. 

They claim that the prohibitory amendment 
can not be enforced. That it has been a farce, but 
they dare not give it a fair chance by a reasonable 

Like Louis Coolidge, said to be one of the wettest 
of the wets who attaches his name to anti-prohibi- 
tionists' literature at every opportunity and is re- 
ported to be still grumbling about Woman Suffrage, 



this group is still living in the past unaware of the 
fact that the public conscience has been awakened 
and is demanding real, unmistL^kable results rather 
than high-sounding verbiage. The main difficulty 
with prohibition enforcement today, is the obstruc- 
tionists' methods of certain wet interests and the per- 
sistent insidious propaganda of the same interests. 
According to these gentlement the law restricts per- 
sonal liberty, does not and cannot prohibit; more 
liquor is sold than ever, there are more drunks. 
Prohibition agents are lawless and irresponsible in 
their tactics. Enforcement of the law is terribly 
expensive. It is the most unpopular act in the his- 
tory of the ages. It is impossible to enforce, etc., 

These are arguments of the wet propagandists. 
Briefly I wish to answer a few of these objections. 

Personal liberty — Every law that is on our Statute 
Books restricts personal liberty. A man cannot 
murder, h^e cannot steal without paying the penalty. 
The good housewife cannot throw her garbage out 
the nearest window, although that would be the 
easiest way. The autoist cannot drive as fast as he 
wishes, although in many cases his personal liberty 
and personal convenience are very much incon- 
venienced by the restraining influence of the auto 

Does not prohibit — No law absolutely prohibits 
and some are more freely violated than the Volstead 
Act, with very many more facilities for enforcement. 
The laws on stealing, overspeeding and the dodging 
of taxes do not prohibit and in as much as they do 
not actually prohibit they should be repealed if the 
argument of the wet propagandists is carried to its 
logical conclusion. One of our laws, which is per- 
sistently violated, is the statute requiring persons 
carrying a gun to have a permit. Whenever a crook 
or a bootlegger is arrested, however, he is always 
fotmd to be toting a gun, and never has a permit. 



Why not repeal this law since it seems to be absolute- 
ly impossible to enforce it effectively? 

"More sold*' and "more drunks" will come up for 
refutation in another chapter. 

The falsity of the charge relative to the illegal 
methods of agents and the heavy expense of main- 
taining the prohibition department will be covered in 
a later chapter, but both of these are so easily re- 
futed, that it seems strange that anyone would ad- 
vance them as an argument. 

The supposed unpopularity of prohibition law en- 
forcement is to be established. Some have been very 
vociferous in their claims along this line and have 
apparently judged the unpopularity of the law by 
the volume of their own **mouthings". 

In the fall the people will have an opportunity to 
vote for or against genuine law enforcement, as an 
act to bring the state laws into conformity with the 
Volstead Act will undoubtedly be up for a referen- 
dum vote at that time. If this act is defeated this 
fall I shall be willing to admit that the enforcement 
of the prohibitory amendment in Massachusetts is 

The wets have claimed from time to time that the 
yes vote on the ballot opposite the question, "Shall 
licenses be issued for the sale of certain non intoxi- 
cating beverages," is an indication of the wet and dry 
vote. Just how a vote on such an ambiguously 
worded question can establish anything is a myster}^ 
to me and to all thinking people. What does the 
question mean? Does it mean that Moxie and other 
non-intoxicating beverages are to be licensed? 
Moxie certainly is non-intoxicating. How many of 
the electorate know that under the state law intoxi- 
cating liquors are described as not over 2}%, while 
under the federal law, anything over J of one percent 
is classed as intoxicating and that the vote on the 
above ballot question means an issuing of licenses 
for the sale of liquors having an alcoholic content 



of not more than 2}%. 

Let us forbear passing- an opinion upon the popu- 
larity of the Volstead law, until the people have 
actually had the chance to decide the question. 

Who says the law cannot be enforced? The men 
who participated in the Quincy House debauchery; 
the lawyers who are collecting large fees for tipping 
the bootleggers on the safe way in which to violate 
the constitutional law of the land ;the courts who will 
not try to establish reasonable respect for the law by 
proper sentences ; or the wet politicians who are 
moving heaven and earth to put obstacles in the way 
of law enforcement. It is the very people who 
are secretly conniving to circumvent the law that 
protest its impossibility. 

An ordinary murderer or thief considers our laws 
farcical until he is brought before the bars of justice, 
and if he finds the courts too weak kneed to give him 
a sentence, he will still consider the laws a farce. 

An outraged public opinion will soon prove wheth- 
er the prohibitory law can be enforced for the rich 
as well as the poor. And this same indignant and 
law loving public will remove the obstacles in the 
way of enforcement, whether it be the wet politicians, 
the scheming lawyers, the weak-kneed courts, or the 
big bankers, who have thousands of dollars tied up 
in bonded warehouse whiskey certificates. As a rule, 
it is pretty easy to trace the enthusiasm of any par- 
ticular individual for the booze traffic to his own 
extremely wet stomach craving, to his pocketbook, 
or to the desire to follow the path of least resistance. 
The first class will soon kill themselves by drinking 
moonshine. The second class are not so very num- 
erous and soon will be seeking a more lucrative and 
safer profession, while the last group is easily sus- 
pectible to public opinion and will be just as panicky, 
and weak-kneed before a storm of dry protests as 
they are now overawed by the bullying and loud- 
mouthed tactics of a wet minority. 





Chapter XII. 

It was my belief while Chief Enforcement Officer 
in Massachusetts that the prohibitory law could not 
be enforced; 

By those who did not believe in law enforcement. 

By those who did not want it enforced. 

By the actionless appointees of "wet" politicians. 

By "drys" mentally and physically unfit. 

By soft-pedal, popularity-seeking "drys." 

Big business houses do not employ representa- 
tives to merchandise their product unless the repre- 
sentatives know and believe in the particular goods 
to be sold. 

Prohibition law enforcement should be carried on 
by men who are possessed with aggressive enthu- 
siasm, and genuine convictions relative to the cause 
of prohibition. 

In addition to conviction and enthusiasm, agents 
must be able to stand the gaff of public opinion. 

We have thousands of men who are as brave as 
lions in physical combat, but downright cowards 
in the face of public jibes. Physical bravery is a 
wonderful asset, but it is not to be compared to 
the mental poise that can carry on when in the right, 
regardless of the consequences. Prohibition agents 
need this poise, not because the majority does not 
approve of their endeavors, but because the wet 
minority is so much more vociferous. It seems to 
be a great deal easier to berate a man for his short- 
comings, than to praise him for his finer qualities. 
Criticism is more newsy. If I should write a treatise 
on the virtues of prohibition agents it would re- 
ceive little if any newspaper notice, but if I should 
picture my former agents as a lot of parasites living 



on the public, considerable space would be devoted 
to my harangue. 

In selecting agents, it is difficult, of course, to 
determine how much punishment they can absorb 
in the way of cheap talk from wet propagandists. 
The safest policy is to take those with backers and 
intimate friends, likely to approve of and sympa- 
thize with their activities so that the agents will at 
least receive encouragfement when at home. 

A certain amount of temperamentality is neces- 
sary in an agent. He should not be selected for his 
pacifist views, or his docility. He should be of the 
type that gets so enthusiastic over the work in hand 
that he carries through the job even at the cost of 
injuring the finer sensibilities of those engaged in 
the liquor traffic. 

The "slam-bang," go through man permeating 
enthusiasm and confidence in his every action is an 
entirely different individual than the suave bank 
executive who calmly and quietly directs the affairs 
of a financial institution. The banker is, to a cer- 
tain extent, negative. He is constantly checking the 
impulsive, who would get rich over night. He 
chills rather than creates enthusiasm. The actions 
of a prohibition agent are positive. He is in the 
front line trenches. He does not wait, as the 
banker, for the other fellow to come to him, he goes 
out after his man, and if he does not get in his 
work first the undertaker receives some business 
with the friends of the agent, rather than of the 
bootlegger, paying the bills. 

The coolly calculating banker makes an excellent 
ambassador to combat European diplomats, largely 
because he lacks temperament. The ideal agent acts 
on the spur of the moment. He may plan and 
scheme for weeks to catch a certain bootlegging 
ring, but when the time comes to consummate the 
deal, the plans have to be carried through with pre- 
cision, speed and confidence. 

The following editorial appearing in the Spring- 



field Republican Jan. 28, 1922 is very much to the 
point : 


"Dry" Wilson is bounced for "incompatibility of tem- 
perament." That is the long and the short of the reason 
publicly given in Washington for the removal of the chief 
state enforcement officer under the prohibitory law. "There 
never was a question of Mr. Wilson's honesty, energy and 
interest," Washington admits. And that is some admission. 
His temperament must have been awful. 

Abraham Lincoln, when complaints came to him that 
Gen. Grant at the height of his career of victory was a 
hard drinker, asked for the brand of whisky he kept so 
that he might send some to the other generals. Even in 
such a matter as the enforcement of prohibition, this 
famous whisky story applies. If the trouble with "Dry" 
Wilson is his temperament, pray give us more enforce- 
ment officials with that kind of a temperament. It is 
temperament that enforces or fails to enforce the law. 
* * * * 

This matter of temperament runs deep. Temperament 
19 very often the chief difference between success and 
failure, between victory and defeat. If there was "in- 
compatibility of temperament" between Wilson and Pot- 
ter, why should not Potter have been the one to go? 

Big business fits a man for a particular job. If 
temperament and initiative are needed such a man 
is hired. In politics the job is fitted to the near- 
statesman. A man with ideas and a punch is made 
supreme High Mogul of the archives division. 
While the lifeless, helpless, jobless relic of by- 
gone days is placed in a position requiring execu- 
tive ability. In other words, a business house has a 
certain job to do and a man is found with the proper 
qualifications. In politics, certain individuals have 
to be cared for and a job is hitched to a man be- 
cause of his political rather than of his executive 

Unfortunately the government is not engaged in 
the undertaking business, consequently it is quite 
difficult to fit jobs to some political parasites who 
are dead from their feet up. It would be much 
cheaper to pension such federal office holders and . 
stop cheating the undertakers. 



Prohibition enforcement must be taken out of 
politics, if proper results are to be obtained. It is 
unfair to those responsible for enforcement, and to 
those who believe in the prohibitory law, to allow 
wet politicians to dictate the selection of agents. 
The farcical antics of some of our Congressmen in 
trying to make a political football out of law en- 
forcement is positively scandalous. Some of our 
high officials will recommend any Tom, Dick or 
Harry that may apply simply passing the buck to 
the man responsible for the selection. Congressman 
Tinkham who boasts of being 100% alcoholic rec- 
ommended so many men for prohibition positions 
that I was unable to keep track of the count. Many 
of these applicants asserted that they had been in- 
formed, confidentially, that they were the only men 
recommended by the Congressman. 

Several Congressmen who are listed as "drys" 
persisted in recommending political door-bell pull- 
ers, who if appointed would have been a disgrace 
to the prohibition department. Some recommenda- 
tions came through from the Governor of the Com- 
monwealth, the candidates looking to me more 
like ward healers than potential agents. The chances 
are that the Governor never saw the applicants but 
the principal is the same. Such men should not be 
recommended unless known. I am pleased to state 
that some Congressmen such as the Hon. Charles 
L. Underbill of Somerville, and the Hon. John 
Jacobs Rogers of Lowell were very careful who 
they recommended, and as a consequence their can- 
didates received careful consideration. Recommen- 
dations from some politicians were not worth the 
paper on which they were written. 

The Hon. Charles H. Innes, the G. O. P. Boston 
whip, called on me but once during my law enforce- 
ment activities and apparently decided his recom- 
mendations would receive scant consideration. It 
was noticeable, however, that he appeared to be 
more at home in the State Director's office. In fact 



I am reliably informed that he successfully pleaded 
the cause of a permit holder client the week fol- 
lowing my discharge. 

In selecting prohibition agents, I laid down a few 
rules which I endeavored to follow. With some- 
thing like six thousand applicants for positions, I 
was in a position to be quite particular as to the 
type of men selected. At times the rush for jobs 
was so intense that I had to stage a raid or two in 
order to recover my equilibrium. Many of the appli- 
cants would gladly have worked on a strictly com- 
mission basis, while others appeared to be the type 
who could have established an excellent commis- 
sion business. These men of course were given no 
consideration. Several hundred of the applicants, 
however, appeared to be mighty fine men and came 
with the very best of recommendations. I do not 
imagine that there was ever a time when more 
really high class men were in search of employ- 
ment. It was very difficult to make selections, and 
some of the pathetic stories of unemployment were 
extremely hard to resist. I was thoroughly con- 
vinced, however, that an effective prohibition en- 
forcement department could not be founded on sym- 
pathy or compassion and my agents were selected 
as much as possible on merit. Candidates had to 
measure up to the following requirements: 

First, Candidates had to have the physical stamina 
and intellect to stand the gaff. 

Second, they had to possess the moral courage 
and integrity to resist the many temptations sure to 
confront an agent. 

Third, they had to be genuine prohibitionists by 
conviction not through policy. 

Fourth, married men with families were given the 
preference as much as possible on the ground that 
family responsibilities kept a man's feet on the 

Fifth, service men were given every considera- 
tion, as their military training, especially in the use 



of fire arms was of value and in my opinion they 
deserved preference. 

Little attention was paid to the politicians seek- 
ing political patronage although the candidate of 
a Congressman or State Official who seemed to 
measure up to the above qualifications was selected 
in preference to the man without political backing. 

My usual method was to pick a few men who 
seemed to qualify and then send them out to see if 
they could pass the third degree of such organiza- 
tions as the Anti-Saloon League, the American 
Legion, the Republican State committee or Repub- 
lican League, and certain well-known citizens not 
prominently identified in politics in the candidates* 
own city or town. 

I take great pride in the class of men selected, and 
felt that when I left the prohibition department I 
had a force of nineteen agents that could not be 
duplicated anywhere in the United States. I wish 
that I could commend these men individually, for 
their exceptional loyalty and devotion to the cause 
of prohibition law enforcement. But in justice to 
the men and my successor in office it would not be 
fair to impair their efficiency by publishing their 
names, consequently I will have to restrict my 
testimonials to the frank statement that if anything 
worth while was actually accomplished, during my 
regime as Prohibition Chief, it was due in large 
measure to the untiring, unselfish, absolutely fear- 
less activities of my agents. 

In spite of the care with which these agents were 
selected, and the fact that all were thoroughly 
tested, and not found wanting, I fear that eventu- 
ally a small percentage will fall by the wayside. The 
factors undermining the morale of prohibition 
agents may be grouped under three heads. 

First, the actual attempt at bribery by those 
caught trafficing in liquor. 

Second, the depressing influence of the low class 
of people apprehended in the liquor business. 



Third, the slurring remarks and persistent propa- 
ganda relative to the integrity and moral character 
of agents by those opposed to law enforcement. 

I suppose the third of these is the most demoraliz- 
ing. Of course, there is ample opportunity for brib- 
ery, although the actual number of bribes offered is 
very limited unless the agent gives some encour- 
agement to those who would pay for protection. I 
am proud to say that I was approached on but few 
occasions and make no boast of unusual virtue in 
turning down the thousands and thousands of dol- 
lars in graft money that some seem to believe prohi- 
bition agents can obtain if they are so inclined. 

My instructions to agents were to raid any one 
at any time, and as I did not leave an agent in any 
city or town for any length of time, there was 
really no opportunity to guarantee protection as it 
would be necessary to buy up a new agent every 
few weeks. I can give a few illustrations, however, 
of how graft could be taken, and I know was taken 
by some agents long since siispended from the force. 
A raid is staged upon a near beer saloon, and the 
only evidence found is a pint of whiskey. This is 
ample for the conviction. The conviction may mean 
a fine of several hundred dollars or a jail sentence. 
If the agent could be induced to accidently drop the 
bottle, and break it, or return it to the proprietor, 
he would save the inconvenience and notoriety of 
going to court, the fine of several hundred dollars, 
and the lawyer's fee, also the tax of $500 which is 
levied by the United States upon any one convicted 
of selling intoxicating liquors without a license. A 
few hundred dollars could be passed in such an in- 
stance with little danger of detection. I discharged 
an agent for such an offense. 

Another example, in some court cases an agent 
might prevent conviction by the slightest uncer- 
tainty in his testimony. His failure to testify posi- 
tively would be worth considerable money. 

If a rum-runner is captured with a valuable 



cargo of whiskey and a high priced car, freedom 
would be worth anywhere from five hundred to sev- 
eral thousand dollars to the runner. Another prac- 
tice which I found had been employed was the fail- 
ure to account for all of the goods captured, for 
instance, if $10,000 in liquor is found on a freight 
car, and only $500 is accounted for in the report of 
the agent, someone can benefit quite materially with 
the other $9500. These possibilities are cited simply 
to prove my contention that it is imperative to hire 
the very highest type of men for this job. It is per- 
fectly obvious that the protege of the wet politi- 
cian, the professional door-bell puller or the poli- 
tical hanger-on are not qualified. 

The constant rubbing shoulder to shoulder with 
the underworld is not particularly agreeable or con- 
ducive to improved morals. Day after day agents 
are confronted by this class of people in court. The 
success of the bootlegger or manufacturer of moon- 
shine, promjited in many instances by second-class 
attorneys, in absolutely lying out of any connec- 
tion with liquor found upon their premises is both 
disheartening and disgusting, especially when the 
agent knows he is being double-crossed by the 
vendor of hootch. It is very discouraging to see 
such tactics succeed. In some courts the bigger the 
liar, the smaller the fine. I found after I had been 
on the job for a few months, that my own vocabu- 
lary was getting rough, and far from lady-like. 
When I noticed this unconscious use of the lan- 
guage of the underworld, it was difficult to lay it 

The third menace to the morale of a prohibition 
agent is the constant cheap talk and reputation 
ruining abuse of the wets. In my estimation this 
species of abuse is the most dangerous and dis- 
heartening. I have had people inquire as to how 
much rum I had in my own cellar, and where I was 
banking all my graft money. To hear some talk 
three or four or five months on the job should have 



made me a millionaire. I have seen agents go on the 
witness stand with sufficient evidence to win a case 
and through the clever work of a brilliant opposing 
attorney, get so mixed in their testimony, that the 
case was lost, and then see the poor fellow come 
off the stand, crestfallen and disheartened to be con- 
fronted by the jibing remark, "How much did you 
make for selling out in that case" ? I have received 
letter after letter, from good but thoughtless citi- 
zens, accusing me of protecting some dive in some 
city that I did not even know existed. When working 
fifteen to twenty hours a day with a force that was 
hardly big enough to cover one city, let alone the 
entire state, I have been freely censored for not be- 
ing everywhere in the state at the same time. Many 
times I have sent an agent in to a city, and he has 
done excellent work cleaning up distilleries, but has 
had no success getting some of the notorious but 
cleverly protected bar-rooms. He would be imme- 
diately charged with hounding the small fry, and 
collecting from the large dealers. Such constant 
criticisms and accusations are apt to undermine the 
morale of the best agent. It is for this reason that 
I am mentioning these temptations trusting that 
the better class of citizens will encourage and praise 
agents who appear to be doing their duty rather 
than abuse them on hearsay evidence. 

The least any organization can do, which really 
wants to better conditions in its own city, is to 
appoint a committee and actually find out what the 
prohibition and the police departments are doing in 
the way of enforcement. I trust that the readers of 
this book will at least give my successor in office 
the benefit of the doubt. 

Investigate and find out before condemning. If 
the public had been willing to investigate conditions 
in the Massachusetts department without waiting 
for me to publicly demand such an investigation my 
tenure of office might have been prolonged. 



Chapter XIII. 

If I was to advise the readers of this book on the 
best way in which to locate a still, I would say 
"Look for a piggery, a slaughter-house, an old 
abandoned farmhouse, or some disreputable tene- 
ment-house in the slums of any city where the 
natural odors are so great that the smell of the 
mash is not discernable." 

Moonshine is always made surreptiously, and 
as a consequence, under the most unsanitary con- 
ditions. Those who make the stuff are generally 
ignorant foreigners, who are anything but clean 
in their own persons. The most outrageous con- 
coctions are used in manufacturing the moonshine 
and in coloring it to give the appearance of real 
whiskey or gin. After personally inspecting and 
destroying a number of hundred stills, none of 
which could have passed inspection by the most 
primitive board of health, I have often wondered 
how any human being could stomach moonshine 
whiskey and still live. 

It may be improper to give a receipt for the mak- 
ing of "shine" in this book, but the process is so 
simple and the ingredients so distasteful that I will 
present it for the consideration of my readers, trust- 
ing that it will tend to deter rather than encour- 
age drinking. Mash is ordinarily made from 
sugar, water, yeast and garbage. It is customary 
to borrow garbage from the neighbors if it is im- 
possible to obtain enough from the family pail. 
The more juicy the garbage, the better the mash, 
and the better the "shine." The garbage, sugar, 
water and yeast should be placed in an open recep- 
tacle — an old barrel is generally the more sus- 
ceptible to bugs and other vermin. This mash 
or swill — for it is nothing else — should be allowed 



to stand for six to ten days in order to give the 
yeast sufficient time to work. The mash is then 
ready for use in the still. If the family can muster 
ten gallons of swill a week, it is safe to figure on 
one gallon of moonshine — that is, it takes about ten 
parts of mash for one part of *'shine." 

It is no joke when I say that mash is nothing 
more nor less than swill. I have seen banana peel- 
ings, orange peelings, and every other conceivable 
kind of juicy refuse in the barrels of mash. It is a 
fact that much better moonshine can be made in 
the summer time than in the winter time, because 
the barrels of mash, or garbage, are never covered, 
and the flies and bugs congregate so thickly and 
are so juicy that they add very materially to the 

I have found stills in every imaginable kind of 
unsanitary conditions. One very large distillery lo- 
cated in Norfolk, Massachusetts, was found in an 
old slaughter-house. An old church deacon lived 
within two hundred yards of the slaughter house, 
but never had detected the odor of the mash be- 
cause he said he never had been able to pass the 
place without holding on to his nose. Sixty bar- 
rels of mash were found in this old slaughter-house, 
without a screen or covering of any kind. The 
flies were so thick that it was difficult to see the 
mash. The water for the mash and the still was 
pumped out of an old spring in a nearby gulley. 
The heads and hoofs and other refuse of the ani- 
mals killed in the slaughter-house had been thrown 
around this spring, polluting the water with the 
most deadly poisons. Such minor details as these, 
however, did not bother the moonshiners. They 
were selling their product, not drinking it. 

To show the extent to which some habitual 
drinkers will go in order to get a drink, I found two 
thirds of a barrel of moonshine whiskey at this 
place. After dumping the barrels of mash, break- 
ing up the stills and barrels, and getting pretty 



much covered with slough from head to foot, my 
men and I washed up in the moonshine. After our 
moonshine bath, when my back was turned, an 
old rummy came along- and stuck his head into the 
"shine" clear to his ears and started drinking it. 
To hear his sigh of joy, you would think it was the 
best whiskey he had ever tasted. Such characters 
are hopeless. The only thing that can cure them 
is death, and if they continue to drink, it will only 
be a short time before the final call is sounded. 

The family wash boiler is often used for a still 
one night and for the family wash the next night. 
The very simplest rules of sanitation are ignored 
by the distillers. One of the most gruesome fea- 
tures of the traffic is the personal filth of those 
operating the stills. 

Hunting for the moonshiners is always interest- 
ing. Running a distillery is precarious because of 
the tell-tale odor of the mash, which is very dis- 
tinctive. Unusual traffic in the vicinity of certain 
dilapidated buildings is often the clue that gives 
away the location of a still. Tips from disgruntled 
co-partners or from those who have imbibed too 
freely and have been arrested for disorderly con- 
duct or have become sick from the poisonous 
"shine", are other ways of securing information 
relative to stills. Some of the larger moonshine 
plants that I have destroyed were found in old 
abandoned farm houses off the main road, or even 
in wooded sections far removed from any habita- 
tions. Stills have to be located near a water supply, 
and those found in a swamp or woods are generally 
near a stream of running water. Several have been 
found by noting the discoloration of the water 
from the refuse from the mash, and then following 
the stream until the distillery is located. 

In quite a number of cases I found stills pro- 
tected by dogs, not the same human dog men- 
tioned in the chapter on bar-rooms, but actual, fe- 
rocious canines. At one place a number of such 



dogs were hitched to slide rings on wires in such 
a manner that the barn in which the still was lo- 
cated was completely protected by the dogs. One 
still located in the vicinity of New Bedford in the 
woods, was protected by bloodhounds some half 
mile from the still. Any stranger approaching 
was bound to attract the attention of these dogs, 
whose baying would warn the distillers of danger. 
By the time the raiding party could reach the loca- 
tion of the still, those in charge had made their 
get-a-way with the still and "shine." The mash bar- 
rels might be captured, but the "shiners" always 
known where to get a new outfit. These "shiners" 
were finally successfully raided by detouring through 
the woods and catching the operators from the 
rear. The men operating stills in the woods seldom 
remain in any one location for any great length of 
time but constantly move from place to place to 
avoid detection. 

The following is a typical capture of a still: I 
went to a small town not a great ways from Bos- 
ton and with the assistance of one of the town 
selectmen secured a state search warrant. We im- 
mediately started for the still, because the select- 
man was under the impression that another mem- 
ber of the board might tip off the culprits before 
our arrival. It took less than fifteen minutes to 
reach the distillery, but in spite of our speed, the tip 
had been received in advance of our arrival. As 
we approached the still, on a thickly wooded road, 
I heard a noise in the woods which I thought at 
first was an animal running. Then I noticed a man 
hiding behind some shrubbery. Ordering an agent 
to follow me I went after the man, after telling the 
selectman and his constable to seize the still. The 
agent and I fired over the head of the man who 
was trying to escape through the woods, and soon 
rounded up three foreigners. We brought our 
prisoners back to the distillery and obtained their 
admission that they had been operating it. Two 



fifty-gallon stills in complete operation were found 
and six great vats of mash. I should say that each 
of these vats held at least four or five hundred 
gallons of mash. 

The work of destroying stills is dirty and diffi- 
cult, but intensely satisfying to a genuine prohi- 
bitionist. In this particular case, I borrowed a pair 
of boots, and an ax, and in true Carrie-Nation style 
knocked everything galley-west. The plant was 
located in an old, abandoned farm house, absolutely 
vile from the fumes of the still and mash, and lit- 
erally filled with flies and other vermin. 

According to the admissions of those running 
the still, it had been in operation about a month, 
during which time no attempt had been made to 
even sweep the floor. From the looks of the for- 
eigners operating the plant, bathing and personal 
cleanliness were lost arts. These men were taken 
to court and convicted, each man paying a fine 
of one hundred dollars, and I imagine within a 
week had resumed operations in some other lo- 
cality. A jail sentence is the only cure for such 
law violators. 

One still that I captured in the woods was pro- 
tected by a watch tower, which consisted of a 
high tree with a platform some thirty feet from the 
ground. From this vantage point the "shiners" 
could watch the only road approaching the place 
for a mile or more. This place was captured by 
leaving our automobile over a mile away and walk- 
ing through the woods. As a rule moonshiners put 
up little resistance when captured as they are 
usually saturated with the fumes from the distil- 
lery, and in many instances two-thirds drunk. Such 
men put up a tremendous bluff as to their ferocity, 
for its effect on citizens living in the vicinity, but 
are cowards at heart. 

I remember one place in particular in which I 
found thirty-two barrels of prune mash. Prunes, 
yeast and molasses being used in some cases to 



make rum. I was searching for this still in com- 
pany with one of my agents when we noticed from 
a slight elevation an old house which had been 
burned to the ground with a man apparently patrol- 
ling the premises with a gun over his shoulder. 
This looked a bit suspicious, so we started on the 
run for the house ! When we arrived on the scene 
the man with the gun had disappeared. In the 
cellar of the old house we located the still and 
mash. It was one of the most unsanitary places 
imaginable, but of course was sufficiently clean for 
the manufacture of moonshine. The man with the 
gun was as much afraid of federal officers as the 
near-by citizens were frightened at his gun. In 
other words, the only reason for this sentinel was 
to bluff the local people so that no information 
would be given relative to the still. 

Raiding in the slums of a city is quite exciting 
and generally as thrilling as some movie scenarios. 
Large crowds usually follow such operations. I 
have very vivid recollections of thirteen raids in 
East Cambridge, Massachusetts, one evening in a 
driving snow storm. The police of Cambridge 
rendering valient assistance. Place after place was 
rushed, Hquor confiscated, those in charge arrested 
and bundled into the patrol wagon for a quick trip 
to the station with whatever contraband liquor 
seized, while the raiding party kept on for another 
capture. Barrels of mash, stills, and other para- 
phernalia were heaved out of second and third 
story windows with the utmost abandon. For 
energetic endeavor and willingness to go through, 
there is not a police department in Massachusetts 
that can outdo the Cambridge police. 

Throwing a fifty gallon barrel of mash out of a 
third or fourth story window is a joy that comes 
but seldom to the average man. It was my pleasure 
to throw no less than fifty-five barrels from a third- 
story window on one occasion and a lesser number 
on innumerable raids. A fifty gallon barrel of mash 



makes a tremendous splash when hitting the 
ground, the contents flying in every direction. No 
Fourth of July celebration could be more exciting 
to a man who hates the sight and smell of moon- 
shine. Every time a barrel is heaved out the win- 
dow the raider can cry "There goes five gallons 
more of potential moonshine." 

Hunting for stills in the middle of the night 
brings all sorts of unusual experiences. One time 
at midnight my raiding party got lost in a ceme- 
tery, and it seemed for a time as if there was 
no road leading out of this city of tombstones. 
Many times doors had to be smashed in and par- 
titions torn down in order to get at the "shiner" 
before he could destroy the evidence. 

I shall never forget one experience in Walpole. 
I had been told that there was a man operating a 
still in an old farm house who was reputed to be 
a murderer, and a very dangerous character. The 
raiding party arrived at his house at eleven o'clock 
on a pitch dark night, all the doors were locked. 
I pounded on the side door. A man came to the 
window directly over my head, and bellowed in 
a tremendously deep heavy bass voice that he 

would shoot the whole crowd if we did not 

vamoose in short order. With a crash a husky 
agent shoved his shoulder through the door, and 
we rushed into the domain of the bad man. On the 
second floor I found a little, old, decrepit, man 
who could not have harmed a ten-year-old boy. 
He was the possessor of the terrible voice. 

The women, especially Polack women, are often 
harder to handle than the men. The feminine dis- 
tiller is liable to throw or do anything. They are 
oftentimes good actors and are not above any 
strategy. At one place I raided the woman ap- 
parently became hysterical, carrying on terribly. 
After searching the house and finding nothing, I 
noticed that this hysterical woman, although ap- 
parently in a bad way, never left the front of the 



fire-place. Upon examining the fire-place the "shine" 
was found concealed behind some loose bricks. 
The woman immediately recovered from her hys- 
teria and proved her ability as a purveyor of cuss 

In another case in which four gallons of "shine" 
in glass jars was found the woman was very friendly 
and appeared quite reconciled to her fate. Ordering 
my chauffeur to take two of the jars, and picking 
up the other two, one in either hand, I started to 
leave the house. No arrest was made, as I found 
that her husband owned the place, and so sum- 
monsed him for appearance in court. As I started 
to cross the kitchen, like a bolt out of a clear sky, 
the woman grabbed a large carving knife and made 
a dive at me. I barely had time to shove one of the 
jars between the knife and myself, and thus un- 
doubtedly prevented serious injury. 

Several elaborate stills have been found in under- 
ground caves. One of the best outfits was located 
in Methuen, Mass., near the New Hampshire line. 
The entrance to the tunnel leading to the distillery 
was in the cellar of an old house completely camou- 
flaged with dirt, bricks and burlap. After finding 
the way into the tunnel, it was found that the 
subterranian channel was about thirty feet long. 
At the farther end a good sized room or cellar was 
found with a large quantity of "shine". This under- 
ground room was carefully cemented and rein- 
forced to guard against a possible cave-in. Com- 
munity stills are frequent. That is a still that is 
owned by a number of "shiners" and passed around 
for the use of the various families. 

Stills were frequently found behind false par- 
titions ; in one instance the owner of a house had 
carefully papered the wall to avoid detection. An 
interesting find was made in a cache in an old 
garage, the cache having been covered with planks, 
then bricks, and finally with dirt and rubbish. The 
clue that led to the capture of this liquor was the 



smoothness with which the dirt above the cache 
had been patted down. 

Another very unusual incident was a Chicopee 
experience. When my raiding party rushed into 
the kitchen, the lady in charge ran into the bed- 
room. I followed her as I suspected by her actions 
that the evidence was in that room. When I 
reached the bedroom, the woman was in bed. I 
knew that she was fully dressed, and not being 
able to account for her sudden desire to go to bed, 
pulled her out none too ceremoniously. I found 
that she had taken the teapot which was filled with 
liquor with her and was pouring it into the bed in 
an endeavor to destroy the evidence. 

On one day, I walked into what looked to be a 
dark closet but proved to be a blind stairway, when 
I landed at the bottom, I was thoroughly convinced 
that it was not a closet. The same day I fell into 
a blind brook and unwittingly investigated a bee 
hive. Anything except the expected is liable to 
happen to a prohibition agent at any time. The 
life of a federal officer is hazardous and strenuous 
enough for the most fastidious, and it is for this 
reason that I urge the readers of this book to give 
my successor in office and his agents every con- 
sideration. Their job is not only dangerous, but 
disagreeable in many respects, and requires a tre- 
mendous amount of night work if results of any 
consequence are to be obtained. Back up your 
law enforcement officials; they are under paid and 
over worked. 




Chapter XIV. 

The actual incident which led to my dismissal and 
offered the pretext for the charge of indiscretion, 
insubordination and temperamentality, was the fol- 
lowing speech, which I made at the Park Street 
Church on January 9, before the Evangelical Alliance 
of New England and the Lord's Day League. 

I am very much gratified with this tremendous re- 
ception, but do not feel that it is for Wilson but for 
law enforcement. It merely happens that I am the 
representative at the present moment of law enforce- 
ment and I do not want you, and I do not intend my- 
self, to lose sight of the fact that this demonstration is 
for the Cause, not for me. I believe thoroughly in the 
rigid enforcement of the 18th amendment and I also 
believe in the enforcement of every other amendment 
and of the constitution itself. The fourth amendment 
is one of the greatest handicaps to the enforcement of 
the 18th. Nevertheless I consider the 4th just as im- 
portant as the 18th and do not propose under any con- 
ditions to violate it or allow my men to violate it. 

There are certain conditions in prohibition enforce- 
ment in Massachusetts that must be rectified immediate- 
ly if we are to have honest and genuine enforcement of 
the prohibitory amendment in this State. I am not as 
much concerned with the obstacles encountered from 
without the department as I am from those within. I 
am conscious of the fact that those who would deport 
me to Siberia where my enforcement activities would 
not be so irksome to certain wet advocates in this Com- 
monwealth do not care publicly to request my dismissal, 
but that secretly they are moving Heaven and earth to 
bring about my removal. One means they have taken, 
a mighty effective one, is that of hampering prohibition 
activities by giving me no facilities with which to prose- 
cute my work. Since the Quincy House raid my entire 
department has been removed from the Old South 
Building and jammed into one room about 15x30, with 
only one telephone attached to the switchboard of the 
State Director. Formerly I had four rooms and two 
independent trunk lines and had great difficulty hand- 
ling the business of the office. At the present time it is 
practically impossible to function. Conditions are so 
serious, gentlemen, that I demand that you do some- 



thing besides applaud my efforts to enforce the pro- 
hibitory amendment. 

You should not accept my statements without an 
investigation. The least that can be done is to appoint 
a committee to impartially investigate all conditions 
pertaining to the prohibition department of Massachu- 
setts and then take definite action. If you find that I 
am of no value, demand my scalp. If you find that 
someone else is handicapping the work, demand his dis- 

This challenge was immediately accepted, and a 
committee consisting of the Rev. Wm. M. MacNair, 
chairman of the Massachusetts Federation of Church- 
es Law Enforcement Committee, the Rev. Frank 
Kingdon of the Tremont Street Methodist Church, 
the Rev. David M. Lockrow, of the Tremont Temple 
Baptist Church, and Dr. A. Z. Conrad of the Park 
Street Church were appointed. Dr. Conrad was the 
presiding officer at the Park Street meeting at which 
I demanded an investigation, and on a vote of those 
present appointed the above committee and at the 
request of the committee served ex-officio. 

The committee investigated, and unhesitatingly 
confirmed my charges. Before any definite steps 
could be taken, however, other than the preparation 
of a preliminary report, I was summonsed to 
Washington and discharged. 

The findings of the committee is well depicted in 
the following extract from a sermon delivered by 
the Rev. Frank Kingdon on the evening of January 
22, to a crowded house at his Tremont Street Church. 

The plain people of Massachusetts want prohibition 
enforced. The removal of Mr. Wilson as prohibition en- 
forcement agent in this state raises the issue as to 
whether the enforcemnt of prohibition is to meet the 
will of the people or the will of the politicians. The 
disagreement between Mr. Wilson and Mr. Potter has 
been made a pretext for the removal of a fearless 

"Mr. Potter is an estimable Christian gentleman of 
a somewhat retiring disposition. He is a beautiful 
Persian cat in an ofiice that demands a buldog. His one 
qualification for the position of director of prohibition 



is that he is acceptable to the politicians headed by that 
arch enemy of prohibition, Henry Cabot Lodge. 

"Commissioner Haynes has bowed to the politicians. 
He has backed up fair words with foul cowardice. He 
has removed the only man in this state making any 
effort to enforce prohibition. Now is the time for the 
people to speak. We indorse most heartily the work 
of Harold D. Wilson and we ought to demand his rein- 
statement. Send your message to Washington in thrae 
words, 'We want Wilson.' " 

This committee fought to the last ditch for my 
retention in the service, and finally when they found 
that certain politicians had the upper hand, called a 
law enforcement meeting at Tremont Temple, Mon- 
day noon, January 30th. Some 2500 ardent prohibi- 
tionists jammed into the Temple at this time, and made 
the whole building vibrate with their cheers for law 
enforcement, I do not wish my readers to misunder- 
stand the object or temper of this meeting. It was 
not a Wilson demonstration, but an out and out en- 
dorsement of genuine impartial law enforcement 
from the Top Down rather than from the Bottom 
Part Way Up. 

The following resolutions were unanimously 
adopted at the opening of the meeting: 

*'l. We commend Harold D. Wilson for his fear- 
less enforcement of prohibition. 

2. We commend him for calling public attention 
to the hampering of conditions under which he was 
obliged to work, thus making law enforcement a live 

3. We call for MORE, and not less, enforcement 
from the top down rather than from the bottom 
part way up. 

4. We call upon the Legislature now in session to 
bring the laws of Massachusetts into harmony with 
the 18th Amendment to the Constitution of the 
United States." 

A fifth resolution was passed pledging the whole 
liearted support of the meeting to my successor in 
office and I heartily concurred in this resolution. 



The important thing now is law enforcement. It 
makes no difference whether it is Wilson or someone 
else who actually does the enforcing, as long as it is 
done thoroughly and impartially. Those believing 
in the strict enforcement of the prohibitory amend- 
ment must forget personalities and fight shoulder to 
shoulder with those entrusted with the carrying out 
of the provisions of this law if worth while results 
are to be obtained. 

The speech of the presiding officer, Dr. Conrad, 
was a master piece and for that reason is published 
in full. 

By Dr. A. Z. Conrad of the Park St. Church, Boston. 
January 30, 1922. 
Friends of Prohibition: 

About a month ago, in a Public Meeting in Park 
Street Church, of the Lord's Day League and Evange- 
lical Alliance, a Committee was appointed to ascertain 
the status of Prohibition Enforcement conditions in 
Massachusetts. This Committee was appointed with the 
understanding that they would report to the public. 
One brief report has been made in print. This assem- 
bly has been called to receive the report of the Commit- 
tee and to assist in increasing the public sentiment in this 
State, which demands an impartial unprejudiced, vigor- 
ous enforcement of the 18th Amendment in this State. 

The very first essential at the present time is that 
Massachusetts shall be brought into alignment with the 
Constitution of the United State. Any State that de- 
clines such an alignment is in a condition of incipient 
rebellion. There is no halting place between loyalty 
to the Constitution and nullification. There is no such 
thing as "No Man's Land" in this great fight for 
righteousness and law. Any party encouraging the 
violation of the 18th amendment by declining to throw 
its energies and influences toward State loyaty and 
enforcement is a menace to the republic and encourag- 
ing anarchy in every other kind of social, civic and po- 
litical activity. An aroused and awakened collective 
conscience in this State, together with an intense con- 
viction, insists that the present Legislature speedily 
enact into law, the bill already before it, which will 
bring Massachusetts out of her anomalous attitude into 
one of constructive loyalty. 



No one is blind to tlie extreme difBculties attending 
the enforcement of the Prohibition Law. On the other 
hand, any man is blind as a bat, who can not see the 
utter impossibility of any return to the old regime; any 
reversal of the national decision which adopted the 18th 
Amendment. Therefore, there is but one thing to do, 
to insist, and to proceed with determined effort to en- 
force the law. 

Not only should every facility be given the Enforce- 
ment Agent and Director, but he should be backed to 
the limit by the well-thinking people of this State. We 
believe in a square deal. The people of Massachusetts 
regard the men who are entrusted with the enforcement 
of prohibition, whether in Washington or Massachusetts, 
as servants of the people. 

The uncrowned king in America is public sentiment 
and popular will. We therefore urge the people of 
Massachusetts to make their righteous demands for 
aggressive enforcement so apparent that those in posi- 
tions of power, will not dare to refuse their obedience 
to the public will. 

Common justice demands recognition of faithful ser- 
vice whenever it is given. Our sense of fairness re- 
quires that we should commend with all heartiness, the 
earnest and vigorous activity of Harold D. Wilson in 
the fulfillmen of his duty as enforcement agent in 
Massachusetts. Mr. Wilson undertook his task with 
courage, with sincerity and with fidelity. Without im- 
pugning anybody's motives, there still remains the fact 
that he was hampered in his activities and was restive 
under the restraints and limitations which prevented 
the carrying out of his ideals. He recognized that the 
task was a difficult one. He knew only too well the 
characteristics of the enemies of Prohibition, and there- 
fore demanded effective weapons with which he could 
put to rout the enemy. He was asked to build a pro- 
hibition highway straight through the State of Massa- 
chusetts. When offered a kitchen rolling pin he vigor- 
ously demanded a steam roller. When starting out in 
the prosecution of his work, he found one of the imple- 
ments which was in general use was a feather duster. 
He demanded instead a big stick, and when he began to 
wield his big stick, he interfered with the peace and 
comfort of some heads that came in his way. In looking 
over his equipment to discover remedies for the 
grievous wrongs and violations of Prohibition in this 
State, he found rose water, eau de cologne, Florida 
water, but he knew with bootleggers in every alley, 
and bandits at the dividing of every highway in 



Massachusetts what he needed was "Rough on Rats?" 
These things naturally startled people who were accus- 
tomed to a quiet, orderly, and in general a gumshoe 
method of making attacks on the enemy. 

When the enforcement officer found it impossible to 
get action removing the limitations which were imposed, 
he was like an eagle in a canary bird cage, told to sing, 
look pleasant, and be good. Instead of singing he tore 
down his cage. When informed that he was the tail 
and not the head of the prohibition mastiff, he showed 
his molars and demonstrated that he would not simply 
idly wag and wait, and that until there was some better 
reason for his disadvantageous situation given, he would 
be at least part head in running down law violators. 

It must be admitted that Mr. Wilson was not always 
ladylike. He never sent his card in advance of his un- 
invited visits, but there was no doubt who had been 
there when he left. He was trying to lift Prohibition 
out of the "pink tea" class. 

He took his job seriously. Not one breath of sus- 
picion has ever been breathed as to his integrity, his 
virility and his effectiveness in getting results. He 
threw the energies of a red-blooded, one hundred per 
cent prohibitionist into his work. He surrounded him- 
self with men who were avowed prohibitionists and 
above graft or compromise. 

The biggest single Prohibition act in this State since 
the 18th Amendment was passed, was the unceremoni- 
ous interruption of the Bacchanalian orgy and Belt- 
shazzar feast at the Quincy House. The greatest com- 
pliment paid Mr. Wilson during his duties as enforce- 
ment officer was that he was not invited to that law- 
defying, Constitution-breaking event. When he ex- 
ploded that bombshell he had committed the unpardon- 
able sin. Those responsible for the Quincy House revel 
were filled with wrath. -So in sacred story, we read, 
were those who violated the sanctities of the Temple, 
when One clothed with authority, with a whip of small 
cords drove them from the sacred precincts. 

That raid should have been followed by the most un- 
equivocal condemnation of those who staged the affair, 
by every temperance organization, and every guest who 
had been victimized, and once and for all the Rpublican 
party should have dismissed from its leadership men 
who deliberately brought discredit upon it. I say this 
as a life-long Republican. 

Mr. Wilson has never slumbered on the guard. He 
has sacrificed himself to the best and greatest of causes, 



the caxuie which is greater than any man or group of 

The successor to Mr. Wilson's office will find no 
heartier supporters and none more loyal than those who 
have applauded Mr. Wilson's honest efforts in impartial 
law enforcement. The Prohibition enemies in this State 
are counting without their host if they think there will 
be any break in the solidarity of the law enforcement 
body in Massachusetts. 

The Committee that was delegated to inquire into the 
iProhibition Enforcement situation, neither asked nor 
received any confidences which might not and would not 
be given at any time to any citizen or group of citizens 
in this State who would visit the offices of the men en- 
trusted with Prohibition Enforcement. Men intent up- 
on the performance of duty would be glad if a larger 
public interest were shown in the work they are en- 
deavoring to accomplish. 

The 18th Amendment will neither be modified nor 
eliminated until grass grows roots upward and water 
runs up hill. It is a fight, a long fight, a hard tight, and 
a fight to the finish, and we are sure to win, because 
right is right and God is on His throne. 

We want action. We want it to be aggressive. We 
want it to be made impossible for the efforts of En- 
forcement officers to be nullified by any one whose 
sympathies are with law breakers. 

Massachusetts, come into your own! Demand that 
your escutcheon be unstained! Believers in Prohibition 
are intent on your honor. Let the voice of righteous- 
ness be heard throughout the State. 

Prohibition must and will be effectively enforced 
when the people make their will the real enforcement 
power in every city, village and hamlet. 


My reasons for demanding a public investigation 
are clearly set forth in the following letter of Janu- 
ary 14, 1922: 

January 14, 1922. 
Major Roy A. Haynes, 
Federal Prohibition Commissioner, 
Washington, D. C. 
Dear Mr. Haynes: 

Your communication of the 12th at hand and contents 
carefully noted. 

I am very sorry if I have said or been reported as 
at^-j 'ig anything; th.t is embarrasing to my Chief. I ap- 
pi ciate the titi^^endous difficulties under which you 



labor, and am anxious to be a constructive and helpful 
part of your machine. 

I have been giving the best that is in me to prohibi- 
tion enforcement during the past six months, and have 
been getting absolutely no cooperation from the State 
Director in Massachusetts. The harder I have worked 
and the more I have accomplished, the less I have had 
in the way of cooperation and facilities for the prosecu- 
tion of my work. 

I have appealed repeatedly to Washington but each 
time when a crisis has arisen. Mi*. Potter has emitted 
a superabundance of high-faluting, meaningless phrase- 
ology — ^has smiled serenely — has called me Harold — 
and then has continued to ride me as soon as the danger 
of an eruption has passed. 

The removal on the busiest day of the year, Decem- 
ber 31st, to impossible quarters with practically no 
telephone service, while IMr. Potter and his help have 
had the best of facilities, (the State Director's own 
private office being as large as the room allotted to 
the entire field force) was the last drop in the bucket. 

I appealed to you for assistance December 28 and 
again on January 4, both by letters and by wire. No 
response was received. My most urgent request was 
for permission to come to Washington where the diffi- 
culty could be talked over first hand. With no remedy 
in sight I had three courses to pursue: 

1. I might continue to pose as a Federal Prohibition 
Officer in Massachusetts with absolutely no facilitites 
for the prosecution of my work and thus betray those 
who have repeatedly expressed their confidence in my 

2. I could resign and thus quit in the face of op- 

3. I could fight, demanding a public investigation, 
trusting that I would not so seriously insult my Wash- 
ington friends that I would be fired forthwith. 

I did not go off half cocked in this matter, as I de- 
liberately weighed the consequences. I knew that many 
were hoping that I would take the bit in my mouth and 
fight so strenuously that you and the other public offi- 
cials in Washington would be insulted by my audacity 
and thus compelled to take action. 

I have acquired a reputation for being radical, im- 
patient, under restraint, etc., etc. Considering the 
gang that I am fighting and the methods that they have 
resorted to you will have to admit that I have made 
very few false moves to date. The best proof of this 
statement is the fact that I am still out of jail with no 



law suits pending. Two-fisted men are needed, not only 
to capture the bootleggers but to arouse public senti- 

I am very sorry if I have acted so drastically that 
I have embarrassed or insulted you, as I have the ut- 
most confidence in my Chief in Washington, and you 
may rest assured that if you will remove some of the 
obstacles under which I have been fretting the past six 
months, you will never have any occasion to regret my 

Massachusetts activities. 

Very sincerely, HAROLD D. WILSON. 

True to the prediction in the above letter, the 
Washington authorities seized upon my challeng-e 
for an investigation as a pretext for charging me 
with being indiscreet, insubordinate and temper- 
mentally unfit. 

My demand for an investigation was high treasja. 
Federal business is not public business. What right 
has a mere voter such as Dr. Conrad to enter a 
Federal office. He is only a tax payer. Congress 
pays the bills, with the money of the tax payer, of 
course, but that does not give Mr. Average Citizen 
any right to ascertain how his money is being spent. 

The "pols" saw in my demand for a public inves- 
tigation an opportunity to charge incompatibility of 
temperament. They felt that if they could get rid 
of such a recklessly indiscreet, undisceming prohibi- 
tionist they could carry on at will. 

They did not realize, however, that in giving me 
the grand bounce for being too energetic in the per- 
formance of my sworn duty they were focusing 
public opinion upon genuine law enforcement. They 
succeeded in downing one man, but in so doing awak- 
ened thousands of law abiding citizens. 

The wet politicians have not only lost out in their 
deliberate attempt to prevent honest, genuine, im- 
partial law enforcment, but they have lost their self- 
perpetuating right to feed from the public treasury, 
that is, they have lost the confidence of the electorate 
and with said confidence, the necessary votes to con- 
tinue in office. 





Chapter XV. 

Among the many charges hurled at me by those 
disapproving of too much persistency and activity 
in prohibition law enforcement, and by some others 
totally ignorant of the true facts, insubordination 
was possibly the most frequent and the most 
harmful. I shall show in this chapter that I was 
not unmindful of the prerogatives of my so-called 
superiors, and that if I appeared restive and bel- 
ligerent at times it was because I had found my 
prohibition enforcement work so seriously handi- 
capped by picayune departmental inefficiency that 
it was absolutely necessary to fight, to be a farce 
in office or to quit in the face of opposition. 

This chapter deals exclusively with the many 
many needless internal difficulties I had to combat 
as Chief Enforcement Officer. 

Obstacles which I appeared to be gradually over- 
coming when the Quincy House crash made my 
dismissal inevitable. 

June 10, 1921, I was appointed State Director of 
Prohibition for Massachusetts. This office at that 
time entailed the issuance of permits for the dis- 
tribution of liquor to those entitled by law to use 
same. At the same time Mr. Elmer C. Potter, now 
State Director, was appointed Supervising Federal 
Prohibition Agent for New England. These offices 
were absolutely independent. Early in July the 
office of Supervising Federal Prohibition Agent 
was abolished, the State Director being made su- 
preme in each State. 

On July 9th, 1921, I received a pre-emptory tele- 
gram from Commissioner Blair in Washington stat- 
ing that my services were no longer needed as State 
Director and ordering me to turn over all govern- 
ment papers and property to Mr. Elmer C. Potter, 



who was to succeed me as State Director. In other 
words, Mr. Potter was to be eased into my office 
with the same ejectment order that kicked me out 
of office. My theory at that time, and it has not 
been changed by subsequent events, was that one 
man was known to be safe, while the other was 
untried with no particular reputation for docility. 

I learned at this time from a reliable source and 
the information was reported to have emanted di- 
rectly from the office of Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, 
that Mr. Elmer C. Potter was to be retained in the 
service at any cost. In other words, the "high-ups" 
in the counsel of the G. O. P. had decreed that Mr. 
Potter was perfectly satisfactory to them. 

A newspaper statement published at this time 
was quite illuminating, quoting in substance from 
this article: 

"Mr. Elmer C. Potter's appointment is eminently satis- 
factory to both the Wets and the Drys. He is thoroughly 
trained in the old school of politics, he is not over-aggres- 
sive, he is sane, he knows the game and above all he is 
amenable to party discipline. 

"The article goes on to describe Mr. Harold D. Wilson 
as an out and out Church man, a Prohibitionist by convic- 
tion, but untried in the field of politics and probably so 
unsophisticated that he will fall an easy prey to political 

At about the same time I received my telegram 
prbitrarily separating me from the Federal pay-roll, 
I received information through another source that 
I was to be made head of the Field Forces, with 
Mr. Potter as my Chief. I immediately rebelled, 
not only refusing to take the position of head of the 
Field Forces, but refusing to give up my position 
as Federal Prohibition Director without a public 
investigation. In less than three days such a near 
riot had been created among my church and other 
dry supporters that I was summonsed to Washing- 
ton for a conference. 

At Washington I flatly refused to accept the posi- 
tion of head of the Field Forces unless given practi- 



cal independence as chief in charge of enforcement 
in Massachusetts, and the right to initiate the firing 
and hiring of agents. My contention was that it was 
unfair to ask me to incur the dangers and hardships 
of service in the first line trenches unless given 
absolute charge over my men. These concessions 
were granted at that time in writing by Major Roy 
A. Haynes, Federal Prohibition Commissioner and 
on this basis I came back to the old Bay State pre- 
pared to enforce the Volstead Act to the best of my 

There has been so much said pro and con regard- 
ing the respective duties of Mr. Potter and myself 
and my alleged failure (termed by my enemies as 
insubordination) to lay dormant when nearly every 
city and town in the state was crying for help that 
I am publishing the section of the agreement signed 
by Federal Prohibition Commissioner Haynes on 
July 12, 1921, upon the signing of which I agreed 
to continue in the service. 

4( 3(c 4t :^ 4t « 

July 12, 1921. 
We are very anxious that you and Mr. Wilson 
work harmoniously together, as I know you will, 
to get the very best possible results in the State 
of Massachusetts. As Head of the Field Division, 
Mr. Wilson will have charge of the law enforce- 
ment work, for which I believe he has special adap- 
tation. While we would, of course, expect you both 
to talk over general policies, I believe it necessary 
that, as Head of the Field Forces, Mr. Wilson be 
given very large latitude, for it is Mr. Wilson who 
will be expected to get results in that work. If 
there are field agents in Massachusetts that he is 
convinced are not effective and trustv^orthy, we will 
expect him to report such names to our office with 
a recommendation that they be dropped from the 
list and will expect him to recommend for appoint- 
ment to such positions men in whom he can have 



full confidence and faith. I am quite sure that this 
will also meet with your approval. 

4: :]( # # 4c :«( 

I found public opinion relative to prohibition en- 
forcement anything but friendly and the public 
confidence in the prohibition personnel in the State 
even less. I soon realized that something must 
be done to arouse public opinion and to create the 
necessary confidence in my department, if any sub- 
stantial progress was to be made in the enforcement 
of the prohibitory law. Some of the agents in- 
herited from the old regime had proven anything 
but constructive and satisfactory in their enforce- 
ment work. As a natural consequence, many public 
officials, especially the police in many cities and 
towns had lost confidence and would not co-operate 
with the prohibition office. A drastic house-clean- 
ing seemed imperative. I immedately started dis- 
charging the old agents in lots of five and six at a 
time. I wish to add at this point that I did not find 
all the old agents valueless or untrustworthy and 
that some of those dismissed from the service were 
to the best of my knowledge and belief gentlemen 
in every sense of the word. It was necessary how- 
ever to let the public know that enforcement work 
was to be carried on in Massachusetts on a higher 
plane by a different class of agents. 

The various newspapers carried considerable 
space at this time relative to my house-cleaning. 
This publicity served a three-fold purpose: 

1. It focused public attention upon the fact that 
there was an enforcement department that was at 
least striving to function. 

2. It served notice upon those who had been con- 
niving with the department that there was to be a 
different order of affairs. 

3. It proved conclusively to those who had lost 
confidence in the old personnel that in the future 
prohibition enforcement was to be conducted by 



prohibitionists in the interest of genuine law en- 

Obstacle after obstacle was encountered in my 
house-cleaning endeavors. Some of the men, acting 
on advice from those higher up or from interests 
without, questioned my authority to demand their 
discharge, and in some instances were re-engaged 
by the State Director. This created a division of 
authority in the prohibition department which con- 
tinued to the time of my own dismissal in January. 

As an example, on one occasion I was notified 
after recommending two men for immediate ap- 
pointment that it was not politically expedient to 
appoint these men. This notice came seventeen 
days after my recommendation had been forwarded. 
While I do not believe that political expediency 
should have had anything to do with the appoint- 
ment of agents, if politics had to play a part it was 
certainly as politically inexpedient on the day I 
recommended these men as it was seventeen days 
later. Why tie up the Department without agents 
while ascertaining the political expediency of ap- 
pointing candidates otherwise eminently satisfac- 

During the month of November largely because 
of departmental dilly dallying I was compelled to 
try to enforce the prohibitory law in Massachusetts 
with about thirteen agents. My men were scattered 
so thinly throughout the State that time and time 
again Wilson's flying squadron consisted of only 
Wilson and his chauffeur. Reports were constantly 
brought to my men and to myself that I was to be 
fired forthwith. On many, many occasions the exact 
date of my dismissal was designed. My prohibition 
enforcement activities in Massachusetts during 
August, September, October and November were 
handicapped in so many ways and there were so 
many rumorS as to the dire things due to occur to 
my agents and myself that it seems like a nightmare 
when I think of those days. All through these try- 



ing days, the men that I had appointed and the rem- 
nant of the old agents retained on the force fought 
almost night and day to obtain such good results 
in enforcement that no changes could be made. In 
this respect my two fisted Scotch first Deputy, Mr. 
Gordon C. MacMaster, rendered particularly ef- 
fective service. Nothing seemed to daunt him or 
dampen his ardor. The greater the obstacles, the 
more numerous the difficulties — the harder and 
more conscientiously he worked. His example was 
a constant inspiration to the agents and a great 
source of comfort to myself. Such men are rare 
and enforcement in Massachusetts is losing in Mr. 
MacMaster a rugged, fearless, hard-fighting, four- 
square man that it will be practically impossible to 

Inability to collect legitimate expenses was one 
of the serious handicaps and today I am out of 
pocket several hundred dollars as a reward for my 
enforcement activities. Men who were working 
from fifteen to twenty hours a day some of the time 
on Sundays as well as week-days, found it impos- 
sible to collect the money actually expended on 

In October matters grew so bad that I had to abso- 
lutely demand a show-down. I wrote Commissioner 
Haynes for permission to come to Washington. 

No response was received to this letter, but after 
a number of appeals to interest Congressmen and 
others I was finally invited to Washington. I 
returned to Massachusetts with the definite un- 
derstanding that I could immediately finish my 
house-cleaning without interference from any 

Nine more men were let out at this time. No- 
vember 10th I recommended for appointment nine 
men. One of these men was appointed December 
2nd, one December 8, one December 9, one De- 
cember 10, one December 27th and one January 3rd. 
When I left the service January 27th, three were 



still waiting for their appointment. It took me from 
August 14 to December 8 to secure the appointment 
of a man who was out of employment and in dire 
need of finances. This man had had two years of 
actual experience as a detective and was the sole 
support of a wife and three small children. He was 
held up primarily, because he could not secure the 
endorsement of his Congressman on the ground that 
he had not been sufficiently active in the party. 

In spite of the many difficulties it is interesting 
to note that practically twice as much work was ac- 
complished during the month of November with a 
greatly depleted force as was done in the month 
of October with practically double the number of 

At times I appeared to be getting the best 
of the argument inasmuch as my recommendations 
for the appointment of agents were gradually get- 
ting through, although delayed. Then came the 
Quincy House smash of December 20th. From that 
time on the handwriting on the wall was plain. I 
could see it and some of those closest to me knew 
that it was only a matter of time when I would 
have to walk the plank. It was impossible, how- 
ever, to convince the majority of the public of the 
impending danger. The next step in placing the 
skids under me was the removal to the Harvey 
Building, Chauncy St., on the busiest day of the 
year, December 31st. 

Just prior to the removal I wrote a four page letter 
to Washington frankly stating the impossibility of 
continuing to pose as Prohibition Enforcement Chief 
in Massachusetts without some facilities for carrying 
on my work. 

This letter was forwarded to Commissioner 
Haynes on the 28th day of December, and followed 
up by another letter and two telegrams. No re- 
sponse was received and on January 9th I de- 
manded a public investigation as described in an- 
other chapter. 




Chapter XVL 

The man who goes after the big fellows in prohi- 
bition law enforcement is said to be lacking in 
discretion and tremendously temperamental, if not 
actually fanatical. It is considered good form to 
raid the ignorant foreigner, but when the stomach 
indulgence of the rich man and the wet politician 
is interfered with, someone must suffer and by all 
the rules of our privileged liquor absorbers the suf- 
fers should not be the law violators but rather the 
law enforcers. 

These more or less philisophical commentaries 
are based on actual personal experiences, and not 
on unsubstantiated theories. 

In the parlance of the raider, I "hit" the Quincy 
House, and in no uncertain manner, the Quincy 
House banqueters "hit" me. It now remains to be 
seen whether they actually knocked me down, or 
knocked themselves out. My guess, which is the 
opinion of many genuine law abiding citizens who 
believe in law enforcement from the Top Down 
rather than from the Bottom Part Way Up, is that 
most of the effective hitting is going to be done this 
fall at the primaries and at the election with the 
Hon. Henry Cabot Lodge, the Hon. Charles H. 
Innes, and his close friend and political protege, the 
Governor, Channing H. Cox, the principle punch 

The Quincy House joy killer, is discussed else- 
where in this book so this chapter will be confined 
to some other large raids. 

It was my pleasure acting with the Boston Po- 
lice, under the leadership of Captain Reardon, to 
raid the Hotel Brunswick during November, 192L 
Ample evidence that the liquor laws had been vio- 
lated was secured, and some of the patrons of this 
hostelry were found to have imbibed too freely, 



either on the premises or prior to their arriyal, but 
by one of the strange incongruities of our courts, 
no liquor violation was found. The fact remains 
however that one of the big fellows had learned 
that there was a prohibitory law, and that some of 
the unsophisticated at least insisted on applyinjf it 
to the larger hotels. Even when such raids do not 
result in a conviction they generally have a very 
salutary effect upon those who have been raided. 
Charlie Innes was one of the defense counsels. 

The following is a typical description of the 
''hitting" of a "swell" road house. On a Saturday 
evening, in the early fall of 1921, armed with a 
search warrant and assisted by eight agents I 
staged a raid upon the Pine Grove Inn, Marlboro, 
Mass. Four agents were deployed through the 
woods and given sufficient time to get within strik- 
ink distance of the rear of the Inn. With my other 
four agents, I then drove boldly up to the front door 
of the road house, and rushed the main and private 
dining-roonis. As we rushed the front of the house, 
the agents in the rear took care of the kitchen and 
cellar. Each man had been given a particular sec- 
tion to cover. One man, for example, took the cel- 
lar; another the outside buildings, two, the kitchen 
and serving room, two, the main dining-room, two 
the private dining-rooms on the second floor, and I 
reserved myself as a free lance to search anywhere. 
The two chauffeurs with our party were ordered to 
patrol the premises around the road house. 

Of course, the first act of the proprietor and 
waiters of a drinking party is to spill the evidence, 
and naturally unless the proprietor has a large 
supply, the securing of evidence is absolutely de- 
pendent upon the speed with which the place is 
"hit." In this particular instance, we captured ample 
evidence for a conviction. 

Another highly successful descent on a j*oad 
house was made on a well-known Inn in North 
Taunton, Mass. Forty-two bottles of beautifully 



labeled old rye whiskey were seized in this case. 
When this whiskey was analyzed in my office, it 
was found that thirty-eight of the bottles were imi- 
tation, and four genuine but somewhat diluted rye 
whiskey. The proprietor, however, was charging a 
dollar a drink for a small glass of whiskey. If a 
customer entered who knew liquors, he was sold 
one drink of real whiskey, and then filled up on 
imitation; the average patron was fed upon imita- 
tion from the start. 

Two hotels in Taunton were raided on one occa- 
sion, much to the amazement of the owners. These 
hotels were well equipped with a system of signals 
which were supposed to be as sure protection as a 
first class burglar alarm system. 

In the first place relieved of its liquor supply the 
proprietor had instituted a buzzer system. If the 
proper man entered the bar room, he was allowed to 
pass on up the stairs to the private serving room. 
If the wrong individual entered, the buzzer was 
sounded and the source of supply concealed. My 
agent, who had mastered the details of this system, 
entered the hotel, and proceeded to the serving 
sanctum prior to my entry. When I came in, the 
buzzer was promptly sounded and the man in the 
serving room said, "Hide the evidence, the federal 
officers are down stairs." My man replied, "Quite 
right, and they are also upstairs, you are under 

In the other hotel the man who touched the door 
knob to the private serving room was out of luck, 
but if he knocked twice, on the door without touch- 
ing the knob, waited until the man in charge of the 
bar had adjusted the curtain, and then rapped three 
times, he was admitted. My agent, the same man, 
by the way, that mastered the buzzer system in the 
other hotel, made his entry according to Hoyle and 
then kindly opened the door for me without requir- 
ing me to employ the formalities of the knocking 
system. Both of these proprietors were convicted in 



court, and as a consequence had a more wholesome 
regard for the prohibitory law. 

One feature of successful raiding is hitting when 
least expected. In baseball phraseology, "Hitting 
where they ain't." I visited Greenfield, Mass. in per- 
son only once, but on this occasion the liquor inter- 
ests knew we had "hit" the place. The Pullman, the 
Franklin, and King's Hotel were raided and yielded 
very handsome returns in the way of liquor. The 
raiding of these places was very simple as the hotel 
proprietors appeared to be sublimely confident that 
no one would interfere with their illegal traffic in 
"booze." At the completion of these raids, I started 
for North Adams with my crew, hoping to give that 
city a taste of the Volstead Act. The dealers in 
Greenfield, however, took the precaution of calling 
twenty-two different cities and towns on the tele- 
phone and notifying the dealers in liquor that I was 
in their midst. The same disgruntled law violating 
dispensers of poisonous liquors followed my party 
as far as Sherburne Falls, where I threw them off 
the trail by starting for Springfield via Ashfield, and 
then doubling back on my trail and taking the 
Mohawk trail for North Adams. 

In spite of these precautions, however, my raids 
in North Adams were far from successful. I did 
secure a number of sugar barrels which were found 
to contain seven per cent beer instead of sugar, 
which the dealers were unable to dispose of prior 
to my arrival so that my trip to North Adams was 
not entirely in vain. 

One amusing raid upon some gentlemen holding 
themselves immune from the law, was staged in 
the town of Wrentham. I received an authentic tip 
that the police and firemen were to have a ball in 
the town hall at which their ladies and friends were 
to be present, and that different kinds of balls were 
to be served on the second floor of the fire station. 
This lay-out differed slightly from the Quincy 
House in that the second story was in another build- 



ing, and the collection of celebrities was somewhat 
less notable. 

When I arrived at about 9 P. M. the festivities 
were at their height. In company with two agents 
I entered the second-story barroom, and suggested 
that possibly it would be better for all concerned if 
the drinking ceased. My orders were obeyed with 
alacrity if not with enthusiasm. Some twenty of the 
select were present. In order to make sure that all 
interested gentlemen benefited from the effect of 
the raid, we kept the curtains drawn, and door 
closed to those within, but allowed the thirsty gen- 
tlemen from without to enter at their pleasure. 

After some thirty-five had entered including prac- 
tically all the police and fire force of Wrentham, 
with delegations from nearby towns, the names and 
addresses of those present were secured and the 
Hquor confiscated. No arrests were made, although 
the Chief of Police who was also the Chief of the 
Fire Department was summonsed for appearance in 
court to answer for the possession of the liquor for 
his two departments. If I had, wished, however, to 
make any arrests, it would have been very embar- 
rassing as there would have been none to actually 
lock up the men or to stand guard as all seemed to 
be present, including one of the town selectmen. 

The Quincy House raid came on December 20th, 
and had a wholesome effect upon the Xmas and New 
Year's eve celebrations in Boston. At about this 
time I changed my tactics relative to hotel raids, 
because some cases had been lost in court through 
hotel proprietors disclaiming all knowledge that 
liquor had been served in their hostelry, asserting 
that the liquor was brought in by the hotel patrons. 
I announced that the people found drinking would 
be the ones arrested, rather than the hotel proprie- 
tor and that the proprietor would be summonsed 
to court to testify that the liquor was not sold by 
the hotel. In this event those drinking were to be 
charged with illegal transportation and possession. 



After giving considerable publicity to this new 
law enforcement method, I left Boston at about 
five o^clock in the afternoon of December 31st, in 
a high-powered car for Western Massachusetts. 
The revellers in this section little suspected that I 
was to be with them on the happiest evening of the 
year. Five hotels were "hit" with comparative ease. 
The first raid was staged in the Belchertown Inn 
some twenty miles from Springfield. Sufficient evi- 
dence was secured at this place to take the joy out 
of the party. The Nonatuck Hotel in Holyoke, one 
of the largest and most exclusive hotels in the state 
was next raided. Couples at two different tables 
were placed under arrest, and later convicted. The 
Kimble Hotel, another large and very exclusive 
hotel was next tackled in Springfield, followed by 
a successful descent upon the Highland Hotel, 
Springfield. The New Year's Eve raids culminated 
with a visit to a Springfield Turkish Bath, not for 
bathing purposes however, but in search of liquor. 
The Highland Hotel furnished a number of sur- 
prises. While I was making my first speech of the 
year 1922 in a private dining-room to some one hun- 
dred and fifty revellers, some of my agents were 
fighting with hotel help and a few bums on the 
floor below. The circumstances attending this 
speech were so unusual that I will give it in full. 
After having searched the greater part of the hotel, 
I unexpectedly came upon a private dining-room 
which had been overlooked. As I entered the room, 
I knew that the tip had preceeded me and that no 
liquor would be found, so to add to the hilarity of 
the occasion, I deliberately sampled the punch 
which proved to be quite harmless. 

At this point one of the guests recognized me and 
said, "Ladies and gentlemen, I wish to introduce 
the famous Mr. Wilson of Quincy House fame." 
The call was immediately sounded for a speech, and 
I said, "Ladies and gentlemen I wish you a happy 
New Year, and an extremely dry one." My speech 



was cut short by notice from one of my men 
of the rough house going on down stairs. I im- 
mediately rushed to the scene of action, but found 
that hostilities had ceased. Three of the combatants 
were later summonsed to court and convicted of as- 
sault upon federal officers in the performance of 
their duties. 

Raids on such hotels as the Kimbble, Nonatuck, 
Brunswick and the Quincy House made lots of 
publicity and undoubtedly have a very wholesome 
effect upon the society folks, who sometimes prefer 
stomach indulgence to law observance. Such indi- 
viduals resent the notoriety of going to court, and 
as long as raiders are at large who fail to appre- 
ciate their inalienable right to ignore any law that 
infringes upon their personal pleasures they are 
quite apt to be wary as to where and when they 

There is a lot of satisfaction in raiding such 
places by agents who appreciate the hypocrisy of 
permitting the rich to "booze" while charging the 
poor with criminality for the same offence. The 
man who believes in enforcing the law from the 
Top Down rather than from the Bottom Part Way 
Up of course loses his job but in losing it still re- 
tains his own self respect and the respect of those 
who believe in genuine, impartial law enforcement. 
Incidentally, every time such a man loses his job, 
the elite drive so many more nails into their own 
coffin, and I am thoroughly convinced that suffi- 
cient nails have been driven to warrant announce- 
ment of the proper burial rites. 

Abolish the private cellar stock, the carousing in 
private clubs, and the winking at law violations in 
the larger, wealthier hotels, and much of the unrest 
against prohibition law enforcement will be elimi- 



Chapter XVII. 

Editoriar comment is always an interesting fea- 
ture of any controversy, consequently a few selec- 
tions from widely separated centers of population 
are published. 

The selections include a Springfield Republican 
editorial, reprinted in the Boston Herald, and edi- 
torials from the Boston Traveler, Boston Post, 
Boston Telegram, Hartford Times, Springfield 
Union, Providence News, Lowell Sun, Worcester 
Telegram, Brockton Enterprise, Fall River Globe, 
Gloucester Times, North Adams Transcript and the 
following significant sentence from a characteristi- 
cally vigorous Boston Telegram editorial. 

"The public is deeply indebted to Wilson for his 
exhibition of Potter's actual dimensions as an en- 
forcer of law." 

Blames Mr. Potter 

(From the Springfield Republican, Reprinted in the Boston 


Elmer C. Potter holds the federal appointment as prohi- 
bition enforcement director of Massachusetts. On Tues- 
day, Mr. Potter was a guest at a banquet in honor of Gov. 
Cox, at the Quincy House, Boston. There is no evidence 
that liquor was served in the dining room, but in a room 
upstairs a generous supply was dispensed to all who sought 
other refreshment than the food and the oratory. This 
liquor was transported to the hotel for the occasion, and 
the person who transported it was able to show a permit 
for its transfer ostensibly to the owner's new "domicile," 
issued by the office of Prohibition Enforcement Director 

To be sure, it is charged that the permit was issued after 
the transfer had actually taken place. But when Mr. Pot- 
ter's subordinate, Prohibition Enforcement Agent Harold 
D. Wilson, invaded the supposedly ironclad security of 
the occasion, there was at least a permit which could be 
flashed in his face, and of which he took possession, giving 
a receipt therefor. It appears that the "domicile" to which 
the liquor had been transferred from the home of Harold 
G. Kern in West Roxbury was a small dining room up- 

Prohibition Enforcement Director Potter and his office 



staff may have been blandly unsuspicious, when the permit 
was issued, that liquor was to be transported to a hotel to 
enhance a banquet attended by prominent citizens and 
given in honor of the Governor of the state. But, as the 
prohibition enforcement director was a guest at the ban- 
quet, he will obviously be expected to show that he was 
not aware, either before or during the banquet, of the 
purpose for which permission for the movement of the 
liquor was sought. 

If Potter Had Known— 
(Boston Traveler, Dec. 24, 1921) 

The prohibition director for New England, Elmer C. 
Potter, undertakes to put an end to rumors of "bad blood" 
between himself and prohibition agent Harold Wilson, by 
declaring that he would have conducted a raid on his own 
account if he had known that liquor was being improperly 
dispensed in an upper room of the Quincy House while 
he was banqueting in the room downstairs. 

Mr. Potter thus seems to be in much the same position 
as the newspaper reporter who comes away from the 
scene of a big news event without bringing the story. 
When he learns about it at the office, he asserts that he 
"would have brought the story if he had known there 
was any to bring." A reporter in those circumstances re- 
ceives no compliments, though nobody doubts his veracity. 

We are glad, however, that Mr. Potter assents to the 
principle that -'the law is no respecter of persons." If 
the energetic Mr. Wilson discovered an instance of law- 
breaking that was too close to the eyes of the regional 
director of prohibition to be noticed, so much the more 
credit to Mr. Wilson. But, of course, there is a chance 
that the hearing will disclose an entirely different state 
of affairs. The public awaits that hearing with a good 
deal of interest. 

An Impartial Descent 

(Boston Post, Dec. 22, 1921) 

The raid of Prohibition Enforcement Agent Wilson on 
the dinner of the leading Republican politicians of Massa- 
chusetts in honor of Governor Cox was certainly an im- 
partial sort of descent. And it proved two things; first that 
it is not, as charged by the extreme "drys," the "low, 
mucker element," alone that lends encouragement to the 
violation of the Volstead Act, and, second, that here in 
Massachusetts, at least, the enforcing officer has courage 
enough to disregard high position, politically or socially, 
in his determination to make prohibition really prohibit. 

Whether the "ardent" seized as an outside appurtenance 
of the banquet was moved to the hotel by valid permit 



or not, the Volstead Act was clearly violated by the per- 
son who appeared to have possession of it, since it could 
not have been had in his home or supplied to "bona fide 
guests" to the number of 300, or whatever number partook 
of the contraband refreshment. The gentlemen who at- 
tended the dinner knew that the law was violated as 
actually as if plain Bill Snooks had been caught in Pi 
Alley furnishing a drink for plain Jim Rooks. 
Wilson*s Passing 
(Boston Telegram, Jan. 26, 1922) 
Harold D. Wilson has been removed from office. 
Wilson blundered, for he held that all men are the same 
under the law, and the Republican ring can not forgive 
that kind of blunder. 

Perhaps some ancestor of Wilson's offered his life to 
maintain that principle when Abraham Lincoln set it 
down as a fundamental creed of the Republican party. 

Wilson forgets that the Republican ring in Massachu- 
setts has nothing in common with Lincoln. To the ring 
all men are equal except Republican office holders. Tkey 
are royalists, born to rule, and every man and woman and 
child is serf to be ruled. 

Wilson has gone, but with him go the petty Republican 
fakirs who have controlled Massachusetts. They have 
sealed their own doom. The next election will ^ decide 
for law and order, and deciding for those principles it 
will decide against the men and the party of booze. 
The Aftermath of a Raid 
f Springfield Union, Dec. 25, 1921) 
. . . but in spite of these circumstances Agent Wilson had 
the unerring instinct which told him that the bottles were 
filled with high grade whisky and cocktails to be found 
in the room immediately over the banquet hall, and a pro- 
hibition agent with an unerring instinct like that appears 
to be of the precise kind needed in the political and social 
atmosphere of Boston, and, for that matter, of other 
places where there is less than one half of one per cent, 
enforcement. Even agents with such rare instinct are 
not expected to operate successfully in more than one 
case out of a hundred and his instinct in this case was 
coupled with that high degree of courage that we have 
already favorably mentioned and that is generally necessary 
when prohibition interferes with those of high rather 
than of low degree. 

In view of such an exceptional achievement Agent Wil- 
son should naturally be the hero of the hour and, though 
he is so regarded by those who cling religiously to the 
theory that prohibition always prohibits, he nevertheless 
finds himself walking in a highly volcanic region, meta- 



phorically as spectacular and as uncertain as the Valley 
of Ten Thousand Smokes left by a recent eruption in 
Alaska. . . . 

A Boston Booze Raid 
(Hartford, (Conn.) Times, Dec. 24, 1921) 

There's a merry hullabaloo in Boston because a federal 
prohibition agent raided a room in a hotel at which guests 
attending a banquet given in honor of the governor were 
supplied with liquid refreshment. The agent found booze, 
and also found that its owner had a permit to transfer 
it from his home to his "temporary domicile" in the hotel, 
this permit being signed by the superior of the raiding 
agent, who attended the dinner on the floor below. Now 
there is talk of demanding that this agent be transferred 
to some place where his activity will be less embarrassing. 
Quite indignant are some of the Bay State's most brilliant 
republican political lights. 

We've about given up trying to dope out the Boston 
type of voter and politician. Here's Calvin Coolidge talk- 
ing nearly every day on "law and order" and extolling the 
idealism of New England. Its bar association moves for 
the disbarment of some of its prominent lawyers, the at- 
torney general asks the removal of the Suffolk district 
attorney, the bank commissioner of the state asks stern- 
er laws because of Boston trust companies' florid affairs, 
Ponzi*s 50 per cent, dupes get 10 per cent, of what they 
put in, as a Christmas gift, and to cap it all, a prohibi- 
tion enforcement agent raids a party at which the pres- 
ent governor and other leaders of pure and holy repub- 
licanism are guests, and which was to be preliminary to 
starting the governor's boom for renomdnation. 

The prohibition enforcement agent labored under a most 
peculiar delusion, of course, when he felt that the prohibi- 
tion law applied as much to a gathering of state officials 
and prominent citizens as it does to the denizens of the 
west end or South Boston, but it's a fact that many other 
people labor under the same delusion. 
Foolish In His Duty 
(Providence, (R. I.) News, Jan. 1, 1922) 

Nearly six months ago Harold D. Wilson, chief prohi- 
bition officer for Massachusetts, was put on what are 
called "the political skids," meaning that certain moralists 
in the Republican organization wanted to be rid of him 
because of his desire to earn his salary from the Govern- 
ment. Mr. Wilson is a fighting sort of person and made 
such a noise in Washington and in the Bay State that the 
fakirs in the "dry" movement were forced to let him alone. 
He was confirmed in power after President Harding was 
warned by the Women's Christian Temperance Associa- 



tion that Mr. Wilson was only an enemy of the bootleggers 
— even if he occasionally voted a Democratic ticket. 

Then came the raid by Mr. Wilson on a Boston hotel at 
a banquet to the Governor of Massachusetts. All the 
guests were plentifully supplied with champagne, cock- 
tails, good whisky and light wines. Governor Cox and 
all the other Republicans there knew the law was being 


Monjdu peucrwnoNS-o". 

Boston Post 

violated. Federal Director Potter, right on the ground, 
must have known it, and he is supposed to be the chief 
angel of prohibition in Massachusetts. Mr. Potter did 
nothing, but Mr. Wilson immediately acted, seized all 
the contraband liquor, enforced the law and brought scan- 
dal on the gentlemen of open morals who were giving the 
dinner to the Republican Governor. 



The politicians said they would "get" Wilson, and they 
seem to have put over tibe job. . . . 

Catching the "Big Fellows" 

(Lowell Sun, Dec. 25, 1921) 
Whatever may have been the motive that actuated Pro- 
hibition Enforcement Agent Harold D. Wilson to make 
that spectacular raid at the Quincy House in Boston last 
week, during a dinner complimentary to the governor, the 
fact remains that there was an apparent violation of the 
law, and the federal agent was perfectly justified in pur- 
suing the course that he did. The fact that several of the 
political bigwigs of the state are embarrassed thereby does 
not alter the situation in the slightest degree. His duty 
was just as plain in this instance as it would have been 
in the case of a still located in a foreign quarter. Conse- 
quently, it ill behooves any politician, no matter how 
potential, to seek reprisals against such conscientious and 
impartial enforcement of the law; and it would be the 
height of folly for the federal authorities to afford any 
encouragement to such efforts. The moment that it does, 
it is destined to forfeit public confidence. 

No man, no group of men, however exalted their sta- 
tions, are superior to the law or immune from its opera- 
tion. The law makes no distinctions and the law-enforcing 
powers should not. . . . 

Taking Mr. Wilson's Time 
(Worcester Telegram, Jan. 10, 1922) 

Hark to the troubles of a poor enforcement agent, going 
about the Commonwealth seeking whom he may raid. 
Mr. Wilson, chief prohibition officer, who brought woe and 
confusion to the reservoir at the Quincy House and the 
assembled guests, with whom he entered without either 
password or wedding garment, says he has many, many 

By some metanomy they are against him because of 
what he does, rather than what he does not do. They 
compass him about. They are ever alert. They neither 
slumber nor sleep. 

Saturday night some heartless wretch in Boston stole 
hig watch while he was directing some raids. 
That Anti- Volstead Dinner 
(Fall River Globe, Dec. 22, 1921) 

Prohibition Enforcement Officer Wilson was an unwel- 
come guest at the dinner tendered Gov. Channing Cox of 
Massachusetts by a number of the leading lights of the 
G. O. P. in Boston, Tuesday night. Had the staunch 
"defenders" of all that is right and good and lawful con- 
sidered that for one moment the press of the entire coun- 
try would be reciting the story of that anti-Volstead dinner, 



other measures might have been taken to see tkat the 
"meddling" officer was busy elsewhere. 

There are reasons to believe that the prohibition laws 
were shattered shamefully on this inglorious occasion and 
citizens who crave for the arrest and conviction of the 
ordinary moonshine man, should be interested mightily in 

Boston Post 

proceedings that permit a body of gentlemen to drink, to 
fill 'em up again and again, if necessary, in open violation 
of the law. 

The Quincy House Liquor Seizure 
(Gloucester Times, Dec. 28, 1921) 
People are not through talking about the seizure of 
liquor at the Quincy House, while a Republican party din- 



ner was going on. The newspapers promptly described 
the incident as the result of personal difficulties between 
the prohibition officer of New England and the man who 
has charge of enforcement in Massachusetts. Mr. Potter 
attended the dinner and issued a permit for the removal of 
this liquor from the owner's home to a "new domicile." 
By a destestable hypocrisy that new home was a small 
dining room in the Quincy House. Some say the permit 
was not issued till after the liquor was moved. 

After reflection over this incident for several days, the 
worst feature seems to be the news that liquor can be 
served any time at big dinners by legal subterfuges, if 
the diners have powerful friends. We know of nothing 
that could give a worse impression than the feeling that 
highly connected men can have liquor served at any 
time while the poor cannot. Our clubs and smaller politi- 
cal societies would not dare to transgress the law by hav- 
ing liquor served in a side room during a banquet, but the 
thing is apparently easily arranged if the diners know the 
right people. The voters of Essex County will have their 
own idea of this unfair favoritism and will know how to 
rebuke it. . . . 

It Can't Be Laughed Off 
(No. Adams Transcript) 

Nothing is to be gained by gossiping over what hap- 
pened at the Quincy House in Boston the other night. 

The plain fact of the matter is that a dinner was given 
in honor of the governor of the Commonwealth; that this 
dinner was attended by high state officials, justices sitting 
on the superior court bench, and the federal prohibition 
commissioner for this district; and that m a spacious up- 
stairs room, reserved in connection with that dinner for 
the use of guests attending that dinner, were twenty ca* 
rafes of bronx cocktails, several quarts of whisky, and no 
less than two hundred whisky glasses. 
. All of the proprieties, so far as appearances went, were 
undoubtedly preserved. It is probable that nobody in the 
company had the bad taste to ask the governor, the pro- 
hibition director, the state officials or the judges, to have 
a drink. 

It can doubtless be duly established that the liquor was 
privately and legitimately owned, and even that it was 
legally transported under a duly signed permit from the 
office of the prohibition director, from the owner's home to 
his temporary domicile in the hotel. 

But it would be nothing short of farcical to maintain 
that this liquor was transported at that particular time to 
that particular place for any other purpose than to be 
discreetly dispensed on that particular occasion. 


A Warning 


"The Judicial Section of the American 
Bar Association, venturing to speak for 

all the Judges, wishes to express this warning 
to all American people. 

"Reverence for law and enforcement of law de~ 
pend mainly upon the ideals and customs of 
those who occupy the vantage ground of life 
in business and society. 

"The people of the United States, by solemn 
constitutional and statutory enactment, have 
undertaken to supress the age-long evil of 
the liquor traffic. 

"When, for the gratification of their appetites, 
or the promotion of their interests, laywers,- 
bankers, great merchants and manufacturers, 
and social leaders, men and women, disobey 
and scoff at t his law, or any other law, they 
are aiding the cause of anarchy and pro- 
moting, ^^ob violence, robbery and homicide; 
they'ar^ sowing dragon's teeth, and they need 
not be surprised when they find that no judi- 
cial or police authority can save our country 
or humanity from reaping the harvest.". 

Unanimously adopted by the Judicial Section [composed only 
of Judges] of the American Bar Association at the Annual 
Convention at Cincinnati- August. 31, 1921. 


029 827 255 6 


I am t)lcasGcl to announce that I am 
to be associate4 witk Henry O. 
Stat)les and F. A, RicKardson in tkc 

Clothiers Service Corporation 

Wholesale Clothiers, 

69 Summer Street, Boston, Mass. 

This Comt)any succeeds the Clothiers 
Sut)t)ly Comt)any, organized ten years 
ago by Mr. Stat)les, and has been a suc- 
cessful and growing concern. jMr. Staf^les 
has had nearly forty years t)ractical ex- 
J)ericnce in the clothing business. 

In addition to the wholesale end of the 
business, we t)lan to sell our friends at re- 
tail on co-ot)erative lines. 

The Clothiers Service Cort)oration is 
now ot)en for business, ^nd I cordially in- 
vite my friends to t>ersonally inst)ect our 
j co-ot)erative t)lan, as w^ell as our ut)-to- 
! date merchandise. 



029 827 255 6 ^